[Ducati]

DUCATI’S MX DREAMS (ARE GETTING CLOSER)

10 months ago | Words: Matt Holmes | Photos: Ducati Media House, MidJourneyAI

We first got wind of Ducati’s alleged MX ambitions some nine months ago, when rumours started surfacing that Ducati had been working on a 450cc motocross engine and chassis for some time.

Upping the rumour ante even more this week is that the Bologna-based firm – who is untouchable on the track right now, along with being reigning world champions in both MotoGP and World SBK – will target the 2025 FIM MXGP World Championship to launch the project.

Ducati spoke unofficially of their intentions to take on MXGP back in 2022; their goal to race in the premiere class coming hot on the tail of the release of their DesertX – a bike that has already cut its teeth in off-road racing under Jordan Graham in the US and, even more recently, taken to a class victory in Austria at the ErzbergRodeo Prologue by none other than former World Enduro Champion, Antoine Meo.

Ducati’s elusive 450 MXer is rumoured to be making its first test laps before July (time is definitely running out!), and if Lewis Phillips from RacerX (on the latest PulpMX show) is to be believed, a Duc 250 is already in the works and undergoing testing in Sweden.

Word has it that Ducati will announce their racing plans before the end of the year. We guess that a timeline would be along the lines of hitting up the 2024 Italian Championship as a warm-up for a MXGP title assault in 2025. And you’d have to say that AMA Supercross and an Outdoor season in the US wouldn’t be far behind.

Talking US racing, the Ducati-related rumours get even wilder, with speculation growing that Ducati is looking to sign two-time SX champ, Cooper Webb. Well, that’s if you’re to believe Robb Beams on his Moto Aftermath Podcast.

With Euro moto brands becoming a dominant force across virtually every genre of moto racing as of late (with the recent German round of the MotoGP being the first time since 1969 that a Japanese bike didn’t finish in the top 10!), the prospect of Ducati joining in on the MX and SX action seems like a no-brainer. And don’t doubt for a second that if Ducati did throw its hat in the ring, they’d come with a hefty, factory-backed budget. With no word from Ducati to either confirm or deny all these rumoured possibilities at this point, we’ll just have to wait…

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