Jorge Lorenzo proudly displayed the red colours of his new Ducati team at the official launch of his new 2017 challenger in Italy on Friday, the Spanish MotoGP champion already getting a taste of the Ducati  in his first test for the team in November last year.

However, standing there all excited at the thought of racing in Ducati colours for the first time in March in eight weeks’ time, Lorenzo explained how surprised he was at the support given to him so far…

“I have to say that I’m more nervous now than in races! It’s a very special day for me. Yesterday was a great day because I really didn’t expect all the love the people here have shown me; the fans, Ducatisti and the employees. Some people have said ‘welcome to the family’ – I think that’s something you can only feel in this team,” he said.

Ducati is only Lorenzo’s second team in the premier class after spending all of his career to date with Yamaha. Climbing on board a new bike will bring many new challenges, however he is more than ready for what lies ahead…

"I have been with the same bike and team for many years so Valencia was a big shock but it was a big, positive change. The rideability is incredible, and it’s so powerful. It’s so easy to keep control. On the straights and in the corners. An incredible surprise.”

“When you’ve been lucky enough to be World Champion, the only thing you want is to repeat that. If we are strong in general, I think we’ll be able to get onto the podium. I’m so proud I now belong to this family. I want to thank all of you, not just for what you’ve shown me yesterday…also everything you’re writing on social media, for example. It gives me so much energy to try and make this team stronger. As a racer and rider I’m sure there will be incredible emotion still to come.”