Ducati Corse Factory Riders Meet Up in Bologna2006-02-13 01:18
On the eve of the start of SBK and MotoGP Championships, the Italian manufacturer's official riders met up with their fans in the factory and ....in the discotheque!
Bologna, Monday 13 February 2006 - The official Ducati Corse riders all came to Bologna last week for their traditional visit to the factory before the start of the MotoGP and World Superbike Championships, which will see them heading off to the five continents.
On Thursday afternoon, Loris Capirossi, Sete Gibernau, Troy Bayliss, Lorenzo Lanzi and Vittoriano Guareschi first met up with Ducati employees, who didn't miss an opportunity to shake hands, ask for autographs and photos and wish the five riders all the best as they get ready to represent the Italian manufacturers colours in the two championships.
It was am extraordinary return home for Troy Bayliss who, after a gap of one year, returned to the Ducati factory to find that he was still one of the employees' all-time favourite riders. The times set by the Australian during recent tests in Valencia and Qatar demonstrate that the 2001 Superbike champion has not lost the feeling with the twin-cylinder Ducati Superbike. He will be flanked in this Superbike season by the talented youngster Lorenzo Lanzi, the first Italian to ride for the official World Superbike team since Pierfrancesco Chili in 1998; Lanzi was able to feel at first hand the full impact of being a factory rider as he was swamped by numerous Ducati employees.
An incredible welcome was reserved for 'veteran' Loris Capirossi, the new signing in the MotoGP team Sete Gibernau and test-rider Vittoriano Guareschi. Loris might feel entirely at home in the Borgo Panigale factory, but every time he appears the warmth with which he is greeted within Ducati becomes even greater: for him hundreds of photos, autographs, hugs, complements and words of encouragement for the tough season that lies ahead. A warm welcome was also reserved for the Spanish rider, who immediately felt at ease amidst the passionate climate of his new family, which believes a lot in his potential and talent. Despite the fact that he is not in the spotlights, long-serving test-rider Vittoriano Guareschi was also greeted with affection and esteem by Ducati employees, who are perfectly aware of the vital importance of his work.
After meeting up with Ducati employees, the Borgo Panigale 'Big 5' were guests of honour in the evening at 'Rosso di Sera', the annual party organised by the Ducati Owners Club of Bologna in one of the city's most popular nightclubs. Together with the 1600 people who had come to the discotheque to see them, Loris, Sete, Troy, Lorenzo and Vito welcomed in the 2006 season.
All four have accepted a tough but not impossible challenge and are ready to give their utmost so as not to disappoint the expectations of their fans, obtain good results and to give them the emotions and thrills that only the Borgo Panigale manufacturer is able to offer.
From tomorrow onwards Loris Capirossi and Sete Gibernau will be taking part in the final winter test session outside of Europe, at the Sepang circuit in Malaysia from Tuesday 14th to Thursday 16th February. Ducati Corse's World Superbike riders have already concluded their winter testing programme and will get their first taste of championship action soon as they head to Qatar next week for the opening round of the championship at the Losail desert circuit on Saturday 25th February.
Source: DUCATI Corse Press Office
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