Above is a photo of Yonny Hernandez's Pramac Ducati MotoGP bike. This photo was taken last week at the Sepang MotoGP test.
After studying this image for hours, before pointing out any details as we see them, first, a tribute. This tribute comes from the perspective of a former low-level motorcycle shop monkey. As hard to believe as it must be to anyone who has seen us in action spinning the t-handles, there was a time when we were paid to work on OPM (other people's motorcycles).
That said, to anyone who has worked as a chassis or engine mechanic on a recent Ducati MotoGP bike, we salute you. Given the opportunity, we'd shake your hand and buy you dinner, and not to just pump you for info. We'd want to personaly reward you for your service, sacrifice, and skill, in much the same way that we and other people give up our seats on airplanes to American servicemen and servicewomen.
This engine gives a very "work in progress" vibe. The heat sink cable-tied to EFI box and the too long cables doubled over and then the slack tied up suggest that this is what they used to call a "lab bike" at Ducati. But at the same time, the beautiful exhaust, and carved billet engine pieces along with the carbon work are impressive.
Our sense is that this picture is a clue as to why when Casey Stoner's crew went to Honda with their rider they seemed to look younger after a few months. Just keeping this bike running well must be a serious job, and trying to race one while keeping it running well has to be, to us former shop chimps anyway, like playing chess while simultaneously putting out a large grease fire.