Dovizioso: Missed MotoGP titles don’t feel like a loss

Lewis Duncan
·2-min read

Dovizioso announced last week he will be taking a sabbatical in 2021 after failing to secure any option within MotoGP that kept the door open for a return in 2022. 

Making his MotoGP debut in 2008, Dovizioso has won 15 races in his time on Honda and Ducati machinery, and has finished runner-up in the championship on three occasions from 2017-2019 to Marc Marquez.

His first season with Ducati in 2013 proved difficult, with the Italian only managing two top five finishes on a largely uncompetitive package.

The 2020 campaign has been similarly tough for Dovizioso, with Michelin’s new tyre construction causing him issues throughout the season – though he still managed a victory at the Austrian GP.

Asked by if he could be satisfied with his career should he not come back from his sabbatical, Dovizioso said: “Yes, I will be happy because I think what I did in my career, especially in the last three years with Ducati… we couldn’t win the title and it was our goal. 

“If I think about that three years, I don’t feel we lost because we came from very far and I think what we did together in the three years was something special.

“We were against Marc [Marquez] and Honda, so it was very, very difficult for us to beat them.

“But I’m very happy about those three years. I think we did important steps, a step on my career, on what I was able to show. 

“So, about that I’m really happy. But in this moment, I really wanna believe for the future, about the future.” 

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Dovizioso was reportedly close to a test rider deal with Yamaha, before opting for a sabbatical. 

He will race motorcross next year and remain race fit with the view to making a return to MotoGP in 2022.

Outgoing LCR Honda rider Cal Crutchlow has signed to be Yamaha’s test rider in 2021, replacing Jorge Lorenzo in the role.