In what came as a shocker, the reigning MotoGP world champion Jorge Lorenzo has been announced to switch sides from the Yamaha outfit, where he spent his entire premier class career with, to the factory Ducati team for next year. This will see the multiple-time champion riding the Ducati Desmosedici GP of the Ducati Team for 2017 and 2018 as part of agreement.
This can be considered as one of the most controversial switches in motor racing history as Lorenzo makes giant leaps to join his current team-mate Rossi, current Ducati tester and ex-champ Stoner, the legendary Lawson, Duke and Agostini to win titles in the premiere category under two different manufacturers.
The triple world champion with 41 victories has taken the biggest step of his career as the Desmosedici GP looks to get back in the winning frame. The team’s last championship came courtesy of the Australian Casey Stoner in 2007 and the period since then, including Rossi’s uninspiring tenure, had left them to invest more and begin restructuring both in the administrative and technical departments seeking triumphs.
Jorge Lorenzo, the only rider to have won the world title with Yamaha since Rossi in 2009, is a consistent performer who took pole position and a second place on his debut in 2008 in the premiere division. Two years later, he reigned supreme with six wins for the first time with a phenomenal tally of 383 points – which is still an unbeaten MotoGP record.
Gigi Dall’Igna should have been the ace figure in bringing him to Ducati as his arrival from Aprilia made the Desmosedici GP challenging for pole and wins in recent years with riders Andrea Dovizioso and Andrea Iannone. But none of them has been world champion yet and in order to make Ducati a formidable contender, an experienced and composed individual like Lorenzo was the key.
The Spaniard won 250cc category twice in 2006 and 2007, which set the tone for his move up the ladder, with Gigi Dall’Igna. So they had previously been a winning pair looking to emulate their past successes again at the premiere class from 2017.
The soar relationship between him and Rossi along with the rumours that the ace Italian is the preferred rider in the Yamaha factory team among the two could be the reasons behind his exit. It is worth noting that the season-opener in Qatar, Rossi extended his Yamaha contract while Lorenzo chose to wait.
Lewis Hamilton’s decision to opt from McLaren to Mercedes and Vettel parting relationship with Red Bull for Ferrari were some of the historic occasions that surprised the motorsport world in recent times but with both of them reaping benefits in F1, can Jorge Lorenzo do the same in MotoGP? Only time will tell!