The Ducati Team achieved a great collective result at Le Mans, home of the French GP, where both Andrea Dovizioso and Danilo Petrucci rode their factory Desmosedici GP bikes to a podium finish, conquering second and third place respectively on the finish line, and Jack Miller finished in fourth, first among Independent riders, onboard the Pramac Racing Team’s GP19. 

Despite getting off to a blistering start, Dovizioso was involved in a contact coming out of the second corner during the first lap and was forced to recover positions, but was able to seize second place half-way through the race and defend it until the checkered flag. Starting from first row, Petrucci also showed resilience as he climbed back after losing positions during the second lap, putting himself just behind his teammate with seven laps to go. 

Dovizioso and Petrucci then enjoyed a spectacular and clean fight for second position, crossing trajectories several times in the final phases until the checkered flag. Dovizioso thus seized his second podium with Ducati at Le Mans after finishing third in 2015, while Petrucci celebrated his first podium as a factory rider exactly one year after his last top-three finish, when he was second at Le Mans in 2018 with the Pramac Racing Team. 

After five rounds, Dovizioso is second in the Rider standings with 87 points – just eight points shy of the provisional lead – while Petrucci is fifth with 57 points; Ducati is second in the Manufacturers standings with 90 points, while the Ducati Team leads the Team rankings with 144 points. 

Andrea Dovizioso (#04 Ducati Team) – 2nd
“I’m happy with my result because the conditions have been really tricky here all weekend and, nonetheless, we managed to seize second position in both the race and the championship. That said, we need to stay focused and try to make further improvements if we want to fight with Márquez until the end. I couldn’t keep his pace until the checkered flag because the rear tyre dropped a bit too much, and in the final laps I also had to fend off Danilo’s comeback. It was a good fight, and I’m not surprised by his speed, as I know him well. We scored the best possible result and the championship is still open. I can’t wait to race again in two weeks’ time at Mugello, a track we know quite well and on which we achieved important results in the recent past.”

Danilo Petrucci (#9 Ducati Team) – 3rd
“It was great race and I’m so happy to finally be back on the podium, exactly one year since the last time I stepped on it. In the past rounds I’ve been quite competitive, but not in qualifying, and this hindered my performance during the race. This time, we managed to start from first row but I made a couple of mistakes in the early laps and lost some ground. At one point I dropped all the way back to sixth, but I tried to stay calm and collected, pushing as hard as I could to close the gap. Towards the end, Andrea and I had a spectacular fight. He was stronger than me under acceleration, while I was able to recover some ground under braking, but I was never close enough to complete the maneuver and it also wouldn’t have made any sense to take huge risks among teammates. The double podium is a great result for the whole team, and now we’ll try to repeat that in Mugello.”

The Ducati Team will resume action in two weeks’ time at Mugello for the Italian Grand Prix, scheduled for May 31 – June 2 on the Tuscan track.

Words and Photos: Ducati Media House