BAGNAIA GETS THE VER­DICT FOR DU­CATI BERTH

Autosport (UK) - - PIT + PADDOCK - LEWIS DUN­CAN

Francesco Bagnaia has got the nod to re­place An­drea Dovizioso in the fac­tory Du­cati Motogp line-up for next sea­son.

The Ital­ian man­u­fac­turer had ear­lier this year re­cruited Jack Miller to re­place Tech3 Ktm­bound Danilo Petrucci, and it was Pra­mac Du­cati rider Bagnaia and Av­in­tia’s Jo­hann Zarco in the frame for the other seat.

While both have scored a podium this year, Bagnaia’s stronger form, which in­cluded a vic­tory charge thwarted by a late crash at Misano, led to Du­cati pick­ing the 23-year-old

Turi­nese for its works team.

Zarco, mean­while, will be a fac­tory rider at Pra­mac on a cur­rent-spec Du­cati next year, com­plet­ing a dream turn­around from quit­ting KTM half­way through a two-year con­tract dur­ing a tough 2019.

The French­man will join grad­u­at­ing Moto2 fron­trun­ner Jorge Martin, who will also have ma­chine par­ity with the fac­tory rid­ers.

Al­though it’s yet to be of­fi­cially con­firmed by Du­cati, Moto2 ti­tle con­tender Enea Bas­tian­ini will take Zarco’s place at Av­in­tia. Tito Ra­bat has a 2021 con­tract, but sources sug­gest that Moto2 points leader Luca Marini could re­place him.

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