Andrea Dovizioso is weighing up the idea of taking legal action against MotoGP employers Ducati other the way it handled Yamaha’s illegal engine sanction last week.
Yamaha was found guilty of using illegal valves in its engines during the season opening Spanish Grand Prix at Jerez ahead of last weekend’s European GP, leading to the Japanese manufacturer receive stiff points sanctions relating to the contest.
It received a 50 point drop in the constructors standings, while its two teams-the factory outfit as well as the Petronas SRT satellite squad-lost all the points it scored for the teams tally from the race.
All four of Yamaha’s riders escaped any sanction though, frustrating Dovizioso in amongst other riders as he could have effectively won the Spanish GP had race winner Fabio Quartararo and runner-up Maverick Vinales been excluded.
Ducati-as part of the Motorcycle Sports Manufacturers’ Association that includes all marques’ currently taking part in MotoGP- allegedly decided to not appeal whichever penalty was awarded to Yamaha for the rules breach-even if it was the minimum sanction deemed necessary.
The penalty though was ultimately announced too late for any riders to make an appeal of their own-in Dovizioso’s case to likely try and strip Yamaha’s riders of the points it captured during the Spanish GP-leaving him frustrated with Ducati’s course of action.
Speaking to Italian publication Gazzetta dello Sport, Dovizioso’s manager Simone Battistella reckoned Ducati’s would be in an “embarrassing situation” should its actions prove to be true, adding that he and Dovizioso “are trying to figure out what to do” should they decide to push ahead with a legal case.
“If it were true that the proposal started from Ducati, it would be a deeply embarrassing situation,” said Battistella.
“Neither Andrea nor I have been informed of the proposal, and as the sentence issued late in the evening with only one hour available to appeal it has compromised Andrea’s ability to make a protest.
“But, even more, it has important consequences in terms of ranking and economics.
“We are trying to figure out what to do if this situation arises.”
Had Dovizioso inherited the Spanish GP victory he would currently sit second in the points standings heading into the Valencia GP, just one ahead of Alex Rins, while Quartararo and Vinales would have fallen more than 50 points behind series leader Joan Mir and out of title contention.
He currently heads into the final two races of 2020 sixth overall in the riders championship on 117 points, level with Petronas SRT’s Franco Morbidelli and 45 down on Mir.
Dovizioso announced his departure from Ducati ahead of the Austrian GP in August following months of animosity between the two parties as a result of failing to capture a title against the might of Honda and Marc Marquez across the past few seasons, the Italian finishing as runner-up in the points from ’17 through to ’19.
With a lack of competitive options left for the ’21 campaign, Dovizioso announced his intentions to take a sabbatical from professional competition with an eye to returning to the premier class in ’22 “as soon as I find a project driven by the same passion and ambition that I have.”