From the 20th-22nd July 2018, Misano World Circuit was overflowing with Ducati fans for the tenth edition of World Ducati Week. The event is held once every two years at the track for Ducatisti to enjoy, with WorldSBK and MotoGP riders in attendance. Tens of thousands of fans travel from around the world to join this celebration of Ducati in their home country.
Activities such as stunt riding, contests, test rides and more entertained fans throughout the weekend, as well as a parade of the attendees riding from the circuit to Rimini on Friday night. A flat track scrambler race was held on Friday, won by Andrea Dovizioso with Xavier Simeon and Danilo Petrucci completing the top 3.
The main event came on Saturday afternoon, the Race of Champions. 12 Ducati MotoGP and SBK riders took part in the race on the Panigale V4 S, each one bearing a livery specific to the rider. The bikes were specially prepared to be configured for the race. There were practice sessions and a qualifying session to decide the grid for the race, which was preceded by a flyover of the Frecce Tricolore. The race was intended to be 8 laps, but rain meant the chequered flag had to be bought out on lap 6. It was MotoGP test rider Michele Pirro that came out on top with the podium completed by Tito Rabat and Javier Fores.
“World Ducati Week is a big party, a celebration for all Ducatisti that every two years brings us all together to share the passion for this unique brand.” Said Ducati CEO Claudio Domenicali, speaking about the event on Saturday morning.
“Ducati has a great past, last WDW edition we celebrated our 90th anniversary, but also an extraordinary present with a fantastic range of products. Thanks to the most beautiful motorcycles in our history, we can continue to grow, sharing emotions and achievements with our fans. Emotions like the flyover of the Frecce Tricolore just before the start of the Race of Champions, or entering the circuit this morning.
“Something special, unique, powerful, which is the confirmation that I am part of a Community of women and men who work and share – along with tens of thousands of Ducatisti who have travelled to the Adriatic Riviera – the pride of belonging to this historical and prestigious brand. There are so many of us, yesterday 30% more than in 2016, and we expect this 10th edition to set a new record.”
The Panigale V4 S bikes used in the race are all up for auction on eBay in their respective rider liveries and signed by the rider. There are 13 altogether including Chaz Davies’ bike, who didn’t take part in the race due to injury. They come with all the original parts needed for them to be road legal as well as a certificate of authenticity from Claudio Domenicali. The auction runs until next Saturday.
Full Race of Champions results: