The 2018 MotoGP Season is becoming rife with controversy. First, Tech 3 announced it was parting ways with Yamaha. Then, the entire paddock seemed to turn against an overaggressive Marques; now, Jorge Lorenzo is in the spotlight. But could this unwanted attention cost the former 3-time world champion his ride for next season?
Trouble in Lorenzo Land
It is no secret that intense contract negotiations are underway at Ducati. Andrea Dovizioso, who everybody thought would play second fiddle at Ducati, almost won the championship last year. However, his teammate continues to struggle aboard very similar machinery. This has left Ducati in a tough position.
The manufacturer wants to continue contracts with both racers, but Lorenzo’s salary is too big, and Dovi is demanding more pay. Considering Dovi’s on-track performance, his demands for a raise seem fair, but taking a big hit in salary isn’t a prospect for the former world champion that is Lorenzo. However, on track antics are making it ever harder for Lorenzo to stay at Ducati.
Before the Jerez Grand Prix, sources told MCN that Jorge had all but signed a deal to go to Suzuki. But during that race, Lorenzo was at the center of a crash that took out his Ducati teammate and Honda’s Dani Pedrosa. This after leading the opening eight laps.
Dovi and Pedrosa seem to be laying blame for the crash on the number 99 of Lorenzo, though Jorge is claiming success due to his earlier lead. However, the crash also allowed Marc Marquez to take over the championship lead, something that will undoubtedly leave a foul taste in the mouths of executives at Ducati.
This crash has now put Lorenzo’s seat at Ducati in critical danger, and as of writing this, there has been no word on whether Suzuki will follow through with hiring him. Adding to that pressure, Ducati is wanting to sign Dovizioso by the June round in Mugello. After which, “Gigi” Dall’Igna—Ducati’s MotoGP racing director—says the manufacturer will focus on signing its second rider.
Who will land where once contract negotiations are finished? We don’t know, but the attorneys that ride at Metier Law Firm are just as eager to find out as you are. Keep following our blog to see how this plays out.