Multiple reports from European media indicate Ducati will build a Moto3 bike for the 2018 season, returning to the lightweight class of the World Championship for the first time in nearly 60 years.
The Boys from Bologna last were in the lightweight class in 1959, when Mike Hailwood won the Ulster Grand Prix at Dundrod aboard one of their 125cc machines.
Ducati reportedly already is testing its Moto3 bike. But the company continues to float mixed smoke signals about its intent.
CEO Claudio Domenicali said Moto3 was “out of our plan” during the team’s MotoGP launch in January but admitted discussions about the class continue within Ducati’s racing division, if not among the corporate suits.
But Ducati Corse boss Gigi Dall’Igna sent positive vibes at the Sepang preseason test about the manufacturer racing in Moto3. Dall’Igna knows a thing or two about winning in the lightweight and intermediate classes of the World Championship, as he oversaw a championship effort for the Piaggio brands Aprilia, Derbi and Gilera.