Ducati Press Release: Checa And Battaini Give All-New GP12 Shakedown Test

Ducati test riders Franco Battaini and Carlos Checa (who also doubles as reigning World Superbike champion for Althea Ducati) have finally completed the shakedown test of Ducati's brand new Desmosedici GP12, bringing the watertight security lockdown at the Circuito de Jerez in southern Spain to an end. After Ducati Corse boss Filippo Preziosi described the bike as 90% new, there was massive media interest in the test, but after a mass of rumors emerged from previous Ducati tests, the Bologna factory tightened its grip on the situation. Almost nothing leaked from the tests, despite the best efforts of motorcycle journalists around the world.

All that racing fans had to mull over were a couple of tweets from Carlos Checa - who also tested his 2012 Ducati 1198R - and a few off-the-cuff comments by Ducati CEO Gabriele del Torchio. Speaking to Italian TV, Del Torchio said that the signals from the test were positive, but that it was too early to say anything concrete. That will have to wait for another 12 days, when the bike takes to the track at Sepang, in the hands of factory riders Valentino Rossi and Nicky Hayden. Preziosi had warned that the bike will look strikingly similar to the so-called GP Zero, the machine tested by Rossi at Valencia last November. But under the fairings, much has already changed, and various MotoGP photographers will be doing their best to get a spy shot of the bike without the fairing on.

Whether visually different or not, race fans will have to wait for the first photos of the bike from Sepang. Until then, its appearance remains a closely guarded secret, with even the Ducati press release giving nothing away. In less that two weeks' time, much more will be revealed.

Below is the - tantalizingly brief - press release from Ducati on the test at Jerez:

Ducati Test Team complete three-day test session in Jerez

The Ducati Test Team, directed by Technical Director Filippo Preziosi, has completed three days of testing on the Spanish circuit of Jerez de La Frontera, with Carlos Checa and Franco Battaini followed by in the pit garage by Team Manager, Vittoriano Guareschi.

The two riders completed a "shake-down" of the GP12, which will be tested in two weeks by the official riders, Valentino Rossi and Nicky Hayden.

During the three days, in which weather conditions were cold but fortunately dry , the work program was completed without any problems enabling the team to complete all checks in preparation to start the winter tests in Sepang, Malaysia from 31 January until 2 February 2012.

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..... forward to the Sepang test, but was hoping to see the #CRTs testing along with them.

Never mind, not long to wait now.

Well done to Ducati for their "Fort Knox" effort, impressive in today's world.

No chance of a lap time then, it would seem irrelevant anyway given the low track temperatures. If the track temperatures had been the same as those of the November test, then I imagine Checa's time would have been faster, especially after my impression of Del torchio's few words(even though it might have been media talk as well)

There are two main factors which give me hope for Ducati's forthcoming season.

- I think they will be helped from both ends regarding getting enough heat in the tyres. The 2012 bridgestones should be quicker to warm up and the GP12 should be better at generating heat into its tyres.
-I think the 1000cc engine will produce a greater range of flexibility regarding rider's styles.

Carlos Checa is Ducati's Golden-Boy which is a BIG plus for the team. His riding style suits the Ducati as we have seen for the last 2 seasons. I would like to hear his comparisons of the GP12, 1198r, and the 1199. Is the GP12 a combo of the 1198 chassis and the 1199 engine/electronics? Checa has an Awesome job!

1198 and 1199 have tubular steel frames and 1200cc L2 engines. GP12 has a Japanese style aluminium frame and an V4 (most probably L4) engine.

What frame is that? There was no frame on GP10/11. Engine served as a frame. Acording to Rossi that was one of the problems so they gave him a part of a frame an' than the whole thing for '12. So what's in 1199?

Don't bother. I'll check on google.

Exactly my point, but I could have been more clear.
The 1199 has the same type construction, but in aluminum instead of carbon fiber, as the gp9/10/11. A semi-monocoque construction using the engine as a stressed member.

It (the 1199) does not have a steel trellis frame, which was previously mentioned.

What I'm saying is that there were 3 versions of the bike that Rossi got before the final (?) GP12 version. a. carbon connection between had and engine, b. aluminium version of the same thing and c. semi monocoque aluminium frame (swing arm attached to the engine).
question 1: Is GP12 a full monocoque frame bike?
question 2: Has 1199 got b. or c. style frame?

The 1199 has an aluminium version of a, the original style of the GP11 (and the GP10). It really shouldn't take you long to find all the photos, drawings and cut-aways you could want of the 1199 now, just fire up Google...

Q1: The GP12 is said to be a twin spar frame bike, like the rest of the manufacturers use.
Q2: ok, to make it easy for you, lets take the GP11 out of the equation - the 1199 has the same design as the GP9 and GP10 - fork attached to air box, air box attached to engine, swing arm attached to engine. Clear enough?

Not so sure about that when it comes to Ducati MotoGP as years ago, Checa was the team mate to Loris Caprirossi in Ducati MotoGP factory team and Checa flung the GP05 probably as much as Stoner did with the LCR. Checa rode only a year with Ducati Corse in MotoGP.

It is no doubt refreshing to see Carlos Checa living it up in WSBK and became champion! Althea and Checa working great together is more of the success factor.


When it comes to Ducati and MotoGP... Stoner was the Golden-Boy... at least for 2007! Ducati didn't have the 'resources' to FIX the Ducati as per Stoner's suggestions. We all know that history by now. Carlos Checa is currently the GB Ducati rider in WSB now. Regardless of the name of the team, Althea-Ducati (unofficial Factory team) didn't want to lose him for 2012. Checa's input is more valuable than the average test riders. His riding style and technical understanding of how to get the most from the Ducati is the data the engineers want before the Rossi/Hayden tests. Does anybody know if there's any truth to the rumor of Haga riding the 1199 in BSB for 2012? It would give him an advantage over the other WSB riders if he makes a return when the 1199 hits the WSB grid.