Moto GP 2019: Ducati clear after appeal rejected

The protests against Ducati’s use of a “swingarm device” have been rejected by an appeal court.

Andrea Dovizioso of Ducati won the first race of the season, in Qatar.   -  Getty Images

The Moto GP appeal court on Tuesday cleared Ducati to continue using a “swingarm device” it employed during the Qatar Moto GP.

An appeal was lodged by several Moto GP teams against Ducati after the team’s rider, Andrea Dovizioso of Italy, held off a desperate challenge from world champion Marc Marquez to win the season-opening race for the second year running on Sunday.

A stewards panel dismissed protests by Marquez’s Honda team, as well as Aprilia, KTM and Suzuki over a clamp attached to the rear wheel of the Ducati bikes and affixed to the swingarm. A subsequent appeal by the teams was referred to the sport’s court of appeal, but it ruled in favour of Ducati.

‘Aerodynamic device’

“The protesting teams considered that the device was primarily an aerodynamic device and therefore not compliant with the Moto GP technical regulations. After a hearing, the four protests were rejected,” the Moto GP court of appeal said.

 

The result of the Qatar race also stand, it added.

Ducati CEO Claudio Domenicali praised the decision, saying on Twitter: “Ducati is proud of its Italian engineering ingenuity and of its ability to innovate. Many people stated [in the] last weeks that we were cheating... hopefully now they will be silent and try to beat us on the race track.”

The second of 19 races on this year’s calendar is the Argentinian Moto GP on March 31, 2019.