Rumour: Antonio Cairoli set to make Ducati debut?

Ducati are making their first big strides in the Motocross world this year as they are contesting the Italian Championship with Alessandro Lupino who’s job it is to test and develop the all new Desmo machine before entering the MXGP World Championship in 202.

After three rounds of the series, Lupino sits third in the MX1 championship standings despite dealing with an injury at round two and at round three had a DNF after coming together with Andrea Bonacorsi.

The other Ducati test and development rider needs no introduction: 9 times world champion – Antonio Cairoli. When it was announced last year that he had agreed a deal with the new brand in Motocross, it was hinted that would be line up at plenty of races but that hasn’t happened yet.

That could be about to change as our understanding is that Cairoli will join Lupino at round four of the Italian Championship which heads to Ponte A Egola next weekend. With the likes of Isak Gifting, Alessandro Lupino, Jan Pancar and Alvin Ostlund amongst others the level in the Italian MX1 class is strong this year. Bonacorsi may also decide to race after his wildcard at round three as he adapts to the 450cc.

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It will be nice to see the Italian back behind the start gate again as he hasn’t raced a professional event since the RedBud MXoN in 2022.

Cairoli had to respect his KTM team management role last year so couldn’t race at the highest level but did contest the Balen International in Belgium and won the MX2 class that day on his Factory KTM beating Sacha Coenen, Liam Everts and Rick Elzinga to show he still has serious pace.

This year, Cairoli has been putting more laps in than even as he tries to improve the new Desmo machine and finally if things go according to plan he’ll be back racing the Italian Championship next weekend. Let’s see if this leads to more races and who knows, maybe even an MXGP wildcard entry before the end of the season.

How cool would it be to see Cairoli back racing at the highest level on the all new Desmo? Ducati would get a lot of exposure too!