The two Ducati Team riders – Andrea Dovizioso and Cal Crutchlow – finished the French Grand Prix, round 5 of the 2014 MotoGP World Championship, in eighth and eleventh place respectively.
Dovizioso, who started from the front row of the grid in third place, provided some early excitement by leading the first three laps, before losing out during lap 4. Over the next few laps, he then lost a few more places and slipped down to ninth, but six laps from the end regained one position when he won the scrap for eighth with Aleix Espargarò. After the Le Mans race, the Italian rider still lies fourth in the overall championship standings.
Cal Crutchlow finally managed to make it to the chequered flag for the second time this season. After qualifying in twelfth place, the British rider lost some positions in the initial stages and was unable to make much progress during the race, eventually finishing eleventh.
Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team #04) – 8th
“At least I tried! I made a great start and tried to pull away as much as possible, but after a few laps I could see that I would never have a chance to fight with the frontrunners. It’s a pity, but for the moment our gap is still too big, and even if we grit our teeth, we can’t make any strategies or push hard in certain moments of the race. Even after my third quickest time in qualifying yesterday I knew that today was going to be difficult. Now we have to think of our home race at Mugello, where we’ll try and get a good result.”
Cal Crutchlow (Ducati Team #35) – 11th
“Today it was important first and foremost to finish a race, and for me that’s good seeing as how my 2014 season has been so far. I got a great start and felt really good on the bike, but there was a crash on the first lap and I got hit really hard by Hernandez by accident, which gave me a dead leg, and I lost a few places. I also made a few mistakes in the race but it’s clear that for the moment it’s difficult for Ducati to aim for anything higher in the results. A big thanks to my team, who are working really hard for us to become competitive, even though the result is not what we hoped for.”
Luigi Dall’Igna (Ducati Corse General Manager)
“Both qualifying yesterday with Dovizioso on the front row in third, and his great start and the early laps in the lead today are clearly positive aspects. For sure however the middle part of the race was the most critical for us, and it confirms that we still have a lot of work to do. Now we are going to Mugello, which is Ducati’s home race, and we’ll try our hardest to give all of our fans a good result.”