FIRST LOOK: Gresini unveils 2022 retro Ducati MotoGP colors | MotoGP

Gresini has officially ushered in its new satellite Ducati era as the team returns to full independent status after seven years as Aprilia’s factory MotoGP team.

Drivers Enea Bastianini, who featured two podium finishes at Avintia last season, and rookie Fabio di Giannantonio unveiled Gresini’s 2022 livery during a ceremony in Faenza.

Gresini originally expected to get a MotoGP title sponsorship from Flex-Box, but that didn’t materialize and the bikes were dressed in distinctive red and light blue colors designed by Aldo Drudi (best known for Valentino Rossi’s helmets).

“We wanted to mix the colors of Ducati and Gresini. We took a risk because it’s not the usual colors but I think it will be unique on the grid. ‘The Next’ [means] the next chapter, the next challenge,” said Drudi.

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Bastianini and di Giannantonio will use last year’s GP21 machines, which won seven races in the hands of Francesco Bagnaia, Jack Miller and Jorge Martin.

“Now Gresini is part of the Ducati family, so we will certainly help them during the season and in the years that they stay with us, both technically and humanly,” said Gigi Dall’Igna, General Manager by Ducati Corse.

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“Surely Gresini will have the full support of Ducati. Gresini is really important for us.

“Enea needs to keep growing in MotoGP. He did very well in his rookie season. He was able to get a couple of podiums. I expect he will continue on that path and grow with his talent. I think he could be a real protagonist during the season.

“It’s his first season in MotoGP for Digia, so I think he has to do something like Enea in his first season… No pressure!”

Bastianini, whose streak of four top-six finishes in the closing stages of last season saw him finish 11th in the World Championship, said:

“The new colors of the bike are very special, when I first saw it it seemed a little strange to me, but now that I see it live I can say that it is amazing. Such a great bike can only be fast!

“My expectation is to be at the front of every race. We can do it. The team is incredible. We tried.” [the bike] for the first time in Jerez and were fast from the start. Nadia has a lot of expectations of me and Fabio and I want to give my maximum.”

di Giannantonio got his MotoGP career off to a strong start by being the fastest rookie at the Jerez Official Test last November.

“The bike is spectacular, maybe the most beautiful I’ve ever seen. With that unique main color it looks like a retro 70’s style motorcycle, we’re sure to be recognizable on the track.

“I’ve always used the number 21, but this year I couldn’t use it because Morbidelli has it. I’m going to use the 49 because after researching I don’t think it’s ever been used in MotoGP so I’ll try to make some history with that number!

“I can’t wait to go to Malaysia to ride this beast! My baby. And to be on the grid in Qatar. We did the first test in Jerez and it was super cool. I’m a bit nervous, because it’s a dream.” to drive faithfully for this team that believed in me from the start.”

A closer look at the 2022 Gresini Racing machine

Gresini Racing #MotoGP

— Crash MotoGP (@crash_motogp) January 15, 2022

Today’s start, the first by a MotoGP team in 2022, comes less than a year after the shock of losing team boss and former world champion Fausto Gresini to Covid complications.

Gresini was the dominant satellite team early in the four-stroke MotoGP era, winning races with Sete Gibernau (8), Marco Melandri (5) and Elias (1) on Honda machines.

Gresini has been runners-up three times in that span and remains the most successful satellite team since 2002, despite a podium drought from 2015, when the team began a new chapter with Aprilia, until Aleix Espargaro’s third place finish at Silverstone last season.

Gresini, now managed by Fausto’s wife Nadia Padovani, has retired from Moto3 to focus on the MotoGP project this year but will also continue to compete in Moto2 with Filip Salac and Andrea Zaccone.

As a MotoGP rookie, di Giannantonio is eligible to take part in the Sepang Shakedown Test, which begins on January 31 just before the official test.