The possible permutations in MotoGP rider line up for 2020 are limited, with almost everyone already under contract for next season. At the Sachsenring, Danilo Petrucci was added to the ranks of confirmed riders, with Ducati extending his contract in the factory team for 2020.
A contract extension for Petrucci had been on the cards for some while, the Italian's victory at Mugello making it an inevitability. Ducati are very pleased with Petrucci's performance, and the way that he and Andrea Dovizioso have worked together.
Petrucci is also something of a bargain. Word around the paddock is that Petrucci is being paid somewhere in the region of €700,000, though he had been hoping for over €1 million after winning at Mugello. After two seasons of Jorge Lorenzo commanding in the region of €12.5 million a year, Ducati's budget is getting a breather.
The confirmation of Danilo Petrucci means that news of a contract renewal for Jack Miller at Pramac will surely follow soon. The Australian has done well for Pramac, and Ducati will be supplying the latest spec Desmosedici GP20s to both Miller and Pecco Bagnaia for 2020.
The press release from Ducati appears below:
The Ducati Team and Danilo Petrucci together on track also in 2020
The Ducati Team is pleased to announce to have finalized an agreement with Danilo Petrucci for the 2020 MotoGP World Championship. The Italian rider will once again pair with Andrea Dovizioso onboard the factory Desmosedici GP.
Petrucci, 28, made his debut this year with the factory team after four seasons onboard the Ducati fielded by the Pramac Racing Team and has immediately shown great chemistry with the squad, progressively improving his competitiveness to conquer three podiums – including a fantastic win at Mugello in front of the home crowd – in the eight rounds held thus far. The Italian currently sits in third position in the World Championship, eight points behind his teammate Dovizioso. The two Ducati Team riders have been the most competitive pair on track this season so far and lead the Team rankings with 224 points scored in total.
"I'm very happy to continue with Ducati for another year – said Petrucci – It was my goal ever since the beginning of this new chapter, because we immediately found great chemistry with the team. In this first half of the season we were able to progressively increase our competitiveness, taking two podiums and an unforgettable win. To renew our collaboration before the summer break makes me even more serene and confident about the future. Now I simply want to stay focused and continue to improve as a rider to achieve even better results on track. We're third in the Championship, and we want to finish the season within the top three."
Luigi Dall'Igna, Ducati Corse General Manager:
"We're very happy to have reached an agreement with Petrucci and to continue to work together on track also next year. Danilo has shown his professionalism and talent ever since the first outings with the factory Desmosedici GP, and I believe his qualities are now clear to everyone, as evidenced by the strong results he already achieved this season, which culminated in a fantastic maiden win at Mugello. With Danilo on track alongside Andrea, our goal is to fight for the title, both in the Riders and the Manufacturers championships."