Ducati MotoGP Team riders Loris Capirossi and Sete Gibernau endured a difficult Chinese GP at Shanghai this afternoon, placing eighth and ninth at the end of a weekend plagued by changeable weather. Both men had to be happy with lower results than they had expected after making poor tyre choices, but they did at least maintain their World Championship positions, Capirossi still holding second overall on points, Gibernau still tenth.

With Friday washed out by rain and yesterday afternoon’s qualifying session also interrupted by showers, riders and teams had little time to choose the correct tyres for today’s race, run in warm and dry conditions. Gibernau had qualified sixth and ran third for the first few laps but was unable to maintain that pace, spending much of the race in a sometime hectic four-way contest for seventh place. Capirossi had qualified tenth, ran eighth in the early laps, dropped to tenth, then fought back to eighth, clocking the fourth fastest lap of the race.

LORIS CAPIROSSI (finished eighth, second overall)
“A difficult weekend. We were fast in the wet but we didn’t have enough dry-track time to make the right choice from all the new tyres that Bridgestone brought here. In warm-up I used a new front and a new rear, the same I choose for the race. That rear tyre was okay for the first laps but then it lost a little, it wasn’t the best choice. With more time we probably would have chosen a different tyre. Anyway, I scored some points, so I’m still second in the championship and some of the tracks coming up should be easier for us. We still have total trust in Bridgestone. As Qatar and Jerez showed, we can be very strong at tracks where we used to struggle. We must keep on believing and working hard. I know I can win, so when the moment comes Sete and I will be up front. We are ready to fight all the way.”

SETE GIBERNAU (finished ninth, tenth overall)

“With the weather we’ve had here and a few problems, we made a bad tyre choice, it was our mistake. We had a few troubles over the weekend, then warm-up was bad, just a little problem, then we went for some tyres that we didn’t know. I couldn’t warm up the left side of the rear, it was too hard, but like I said, it was our choice. I had a bit of a battle with a few other guys, it got pretty tight at times but it was all fair, though I was struggling a bit too much to have fun. Looking ahead to the next few races, we just need to keep our heads down, keep learning and keep improving.”

LIVIO SUPPO (Ducati MotoGP project manager)
“We must analyse the data to work out why we didn’t get the results we expected. In theory today’s warmer weather should have worked better for us, but we just didn’t have enough time to test everything we needed to test, though, of course, that was the same for everyone. We need to work on that so we can be more reactive in the future. This is a very competitive Championship and we’ll do our best to keep at the front.”


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