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Rumor Spreads that Jorge Lorenzo Wants to Leave Honda and Go Back to Ducati

The Ducati MotoGP team decided to sever its relationship with Jorge Lorenzo last year just prior to Lorenzo finding form on the Italian bike and winning three races. Lorenzo was picked up by the factory Honda team (Repsol Honda) where he signed a two-year contract through the end of 2020.

To say that Lorenzo’s stint at Honda has, thus far, been a nightmare is no overstatement. The current Honda was developed for the riding style of Marc Marquez (something that is even frustrating Cal Crutchlow at this point), and Lorenzo, as a result of multiple injuries beginning late last season, missed valuable pre-season testing on the Honda, and has had to ride both unprepared and injured.

Currently, Lorenzo is sitting out while nursing a back injury and will miss this weekend’s Austrian MotoGP race. Meanwhile, rumors are circulating that Lorenzo is exploring a move back to Ducati (either as a factory team racer or, more likely, taking Jack Miller’s seat at the satellite team, Pramac Racing Ducati). Signed to a Honda contract for next year, Lorenzo would need to negotiate his way out of that commitment if he changes teams. Stay tuned.

Take a look at this MotorSport.com video, which contains a good summary of Lorenzo’s injuries and difficulties at Honda.

22 Comments

  1. Goose Lavel says:

    JL now says he will stay with Honda through the 2020 season

  2. Tom R says:

    Reports of rumors on MD?

    Rumors as headlines are usually found at places like MSNBC or Huffington Post.

  3. Todd says:

    I think it would be foolish for Lorenzo not to try for the Ducati ride. He knows he’s not going to win and probably get hurt again if remains and then left let go in 2020. The Duck is clearly the best bike imo, just look at how high the riders place who are not That great of riders

  4. Provologna says:

    Everything Re. MotoGP including this story is a sideshow till early-mid 2030s, if/when MM decides to retire. Till then the rest “…is dust in the wind…”

  5. Fred N says:

    When Casey Stoner retired, the mould was broken.
    Could turn his hand to Honda or Ducati and consistently win.
    How much effort did he have to put in for Georges benefit at Ducati?
    Casey goes, and George is a loser again at Honda this time around. Tank wrong shape Jorga?
    Perhaps he will turn up as Vale’s replacement at Yamaha ?

    • Joe from Canada says:

      Honda changed the tank like the Ducati for him right at the beginning.. He’s a rider that needs everything perfect for him in order to win. I bet if MM moved to any other team he would win right away.

  6. Bart says:

    The guy is on the best Moto GP bike on the planet with the best backup. Its not the bike.
    Yeah, I understand “rider style”, and the best riders I know could ride/race a bike fast in spite of the bike/track/tires/weather/phase of the moon.

    The guy is a high maintenance whiner. Really good when the cards are all in his favor, have seen him rail at Mugello and Laguna Seca. He needs to go look in the mirror for a while, the problema is there.

  7. bmbktmracer says:

    Maybe being the star of a satellite team would be a better fit than his current position. Frankly, I never understood Honda’s rationale for bringing a second superstar on the team. Crutchlow or Nakagami would have been better choices in my ever-humble opinion. No matter, I hope he recovers from his injuries and can get back in the game soon.

  8. Artem says:

    What a pity. I was his fun. Girlish.

  9. mickey says:

    He was an idiot for leaving Yamaha in the first place. Oh, the ego’s that must be stroked.

    Aka Rossi
    Aka Crutchlow
    Aka Zarco
    Aka Iannone

    • fred says:

      I guess we define “idiot” differently. Yamaha treated him terribly when he won the 2015 championship. What are Yamaha’s stats since he left? Championships – Zero.
      Losing streak – longest in brand history – 25.
      Wins in 2017 – 4.
      Wins in 2018 – 1.
      Wins in 2019 – 1.

      It looks to me like Yamaha lost out more than Jorge did, but after how Yamaha chose to reject him, Lorenzo had no real choice.

      He made a lot of money from the Ducati move, even though it took a while to both adapt to the bike and bring it up to snuff.

      Even though neither the Ducati move nor the Honda move have proven great for Jorge’s record, both were the best options available at the time.

      As for the current round of rumors, I tend to think that it’s just silly-season boredom. With almost everything locked up, people ‘need’ something to speculate about. I’d like to see Lorenzo back up in the front of the pack, be it on a Honda or a Ducati, but his career choices really don’t worry me.

      • mickey says:

        Fred do you think Jorge has won more races on the Duc/Honda than he would have had he stayed at Yamaha? So they didn’t treat him the best. So what? He’s supposed to be a professional. Suck it up and go do your job. If you want to win, you ride the bike that gives you the best chance to do that. For him that was the Yamaha. He wore the M1 like a glove. Unbeatable at times. This is where the ego comes in.The “I’m a champion, I’m more important than the bike or the mfg. They will be nothing without me. I’ll go somewhere else and beat them with an inferior product” attitude. One that rarely works out.

        Yea the money from Ducati was great, but at his age and experience no one should be saying it’s time for him to retire which was posted further down the sheet here, and which I have also seen posted elsewhere. Lorenzo was a great rider, a 3x world champion (although IMO his victory celebrations bordered on obnoxious) and the way it’s going we are never going to see that Lorenzo again. Maybe if he manages to sign with Suzuki. The only other bike in the paddock that suits his riding style.

        Rossi’s ego got the best of him when he went to Ducati and couldn’t ride the thing. He wasted 2 of his best remaining years when he could have been earning a 10th championship trying to ride the Duc. Zarco’s ego told him he should be a factory and not a satellite rider, then he turned his nose up at Honda who wanted him, and went to KTM. That hasn’t worked out so well either. He looks like a whipped pup all the time now.

        Some guys are meant to ride certain bikes. Lorenzo was meant to ride the Yamaha (imo)

        • fred says:

          To start with a point of agreement, I couldn’t bear some of Lorenzo’s victory celebrations. 🙂

          Do I think he would have won more races if he had stayed at Yamaha? Possibly. He beat Rossi 4 to 2 in 2016, an I believe that Jorge is a better racer than Mav or Vale, but he would likely not have won many more than them combined (6) in the last 2 1/2 season. Admittedly, with Lorenzo still at Yamaha, they probably wouldn’t have lost their way so badly. OTOH, they were no longer supporting him nor listening to him, so that is not a sure bet.

          So what? I have worked for employers who treated me very poorly, and it takes a lot out of you. After a while, you get tired of making jerks rich, even if they pay you well. Jorge is at the point in life where there was no reason be accept being treated like dirt when there were other companies who wanted his services.

          Even though it’s fun to play “what if?”, it is ultimately impossible to be certain. Jorge would “likely” have won Silverstone last year except for the weather.

          I do think he would have had better results at Ducati this year than he is having with Honda, but that situation had become toxic. I blame Dovi for most of that, but my opinion doesn’t count for much.

          Lorenzo’s “big Yamaha mistake” was allowing Rossi back on the team. He knew he could beat him on the track, but far underestimate Rossi’s backstabbing off the track. But that’s just another opinion.

          Since we can’t wind back the clock, I’m happy just to watch how it all unfolds. Other than not wanting to see riders get hurt, not much bothers me. My 3 main criteria for racers are talent, work ethic, and being able to communicate without profanity.

          • mickey says:

            Well one thjng for sure, no individual rider or manufacturer besides Honda is going to be winning a lot of races as long as Marquez is healthy

            Just watched FP4 and Vinales and Dovi have the pace, but we will see what happens tomorrow morning when the lights go out and the great white inside Marquez is released to gobble up the minnows from Yamaha and Ducati lol

          • mickey says:

            BTW record 59th pole for Marquez in Austria

        • Joe from Canada says:

          He could also probably ride for Suzuki.

  10. endoman38 says:

    Surprise, surprise. I’m sure Honda will gladly let out of the contract. Reminds me of Chad Reed…complains about every bike he’s on.

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