Team SUZUKI ECSTAR's Italian rider Valentino Rossi (R) and Spanish Jorge Lorenzo of Ducati Team (C) compete during the 2017 Qatar MotoGP at the Losail International Circuit, north of the capital Doha on March 26, 2017. Spain's Maverick Vinales of Movistar Yamaha MotoGP won the season-opening Qatar MotoGP on March 26, 2017, shrugging off a poor start from pole position under the desert floodlights. Defending world champion Marc Marquez was fourth on a Honda. / AFP PHOTO / Karim JAAFAR (Photo credit should read KARIM JAAFAR/AFP/Getty Images)

Jorge Lorenzo’s debut race for the Ducati MotoGP team proved to be a tough one for the Spanish champion.

He started well from row 4, his starting position defined by free practice three due to the cancellation of FP4 and qualifying due to weather on Saturday, but unfortunately, on the opening lap he went wide at Turn 5 and dropped to sixteenth position.

Jorge then began a recovery through the field, lapping at the same times as the leading group which took him into ninth position by the mid-point.

But, six laps from the end however Lorenzo had to slow his pace and he finished the race in eleventh place.

“It was a very complicated race from all aspects,” he said. “I started off well, but on the opening lap I went wide and lost a lot of positions, and this conditioned me in my efforts to get back up. Then I felt better on the bike and I started to lap at the same pace as the leaders, but unfortunately in the final part of the race I started to lose confidence in the tyres and my bike became a lot more physical to ride, so I had to slow the pace and I was unable to finish in the top 10.”

“I want to be positive about things however, even though my first race with Ducati didn’t go the way we expected. It’s true that we are just at the start, and we know we’ve got a lot of work to do.”