Main image courtesy of Ducati.
An interesting new story is developing in the FIM Motocross World Championship as the word on the street is that famed-Italian motorcycle manufacturer Ducati is interested in creating a motocross bike with the intention of racing in MXGP. On Track Off-Road senior writer Adam Wheeler was on hand at the MotoGP British Grand Prix at Silverstone this past weekend and sought out further information about the alleged rumor.
“Andy [McKinstry] from GateDropMX sent me a message saying that he had heard that Ducati were actually going to be interested in joining MXGP, which actually I thought was highly unlikely,” explained Wheeler in the 2022 Racer X MXGP of Sweden Review Show. “But I went and asked around in MotoGP, of course where Ducati are extremely prevalent and actually won the Grand Prix at Silverstone, and it seems to be that it’s true. The Italians have an engine on the test bench. It looks like they're going to have a prototype rolling by the end of the year and their aim is to go MXGP racing in 2024 if the bike turns out to be pretty competitive.”
Ducati Moto Holding S.p.A. was founded nearly 100 years ago and is currently headquartered in Bologna, Italy. The brand has had a long and storied history of success in Grand Prix motorcycle racing and even won the 2007 MotoGP World Championship with Casey Stoner. But their history with off-road motorcycles is extremely limited with only a handful of attempts over the years. That has recently changed though which could be a key development into what Ducati is planning with their motocross future.
“Ducati launched their first offroad bike this year called Desert X. So that was their step into hardcore offroad,” Adam Wheeler continued. “Ducati are really diversifying. They're making electric bikes. The Moto-E project in MotoGP is something that’s very hot, and now this whole offroad thing. The Italians are getting really busy.”
Wheeler also went on to explain that these are only rumors still at the moment and there is not clear path laid out yet as to whether Ducati intends to enter MXGP as a factory team or if they wish to team up with Satellite programs in the paddock to begin their journey. Either way, it does appear Ducati is at least potentially going to have a go at motocross as soon as 2024.
Listen to the full Racer X MXGP of Sweden Review Show below: