The 66-year-old became Ducati’s sporting director in 2014, having previously served as its MotoGP project director and its Superbike programme director before that.
Ciabatti has seen Ducati win all of its MotoGP titles, beginning with Casey Stoner’s 2007 success and then being a key part of the management structure through the Italian marque’s return to championship-winning ways in 2022 with Francesco Bagnaia.
The 2023 season was a banner year for Ducati, who won a record 17 of the 20 grands prix, locked out the top three in the riders’ standings – winning it with Bagnaia – won the constructors’ crown and the teams’ championship with Pramac Racing.
It also won the World Superbike championship for the second year in a row with Alvaro Bautista.
Ciabatti will now serve as general manager of Ducati’s new off-road division, which is preparing the marque’s step into motocross competition from 2024.
Next year, Ducati will enter its 450 prototype into national competition before stepping up to the MXGP World Championship and AMA Supercross Championship in the coming years.
Ciabatti will still have some presence with Ducati in its road racing division, as he will continue to coordinate the brand’s racing activities in MotoAmerica, British Superbikes, the All Japan Superbike series, the Australian Superbike championship and the CIV series in Italy.
His position as sporting director of Ducati Corse in MotoGP will be taken by Mauro Grassilli, who previously served as its sporting, marketing and communications director.
Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images
Francesco Bagnaia, Ducati Team
Ciabatti’s change of role marks another major shake-up within the Ducati team for 2024, after one of Gigi Dall’Igna’s most trusted engineers Massimo Bartolini accepted an offer to become Yamaha’s technical director.
Ducati will continue to field eight bikes in MotoGP in 2024, with Bagnaia seeking a third crown with its factory squad after seeing off Pramac’s Jorge Martin last season.
The Italian brand will face a major shake-up to its structure next year, however, as eight-time grand prix motorcycle world champion Marc Marquez joins Gresini Ducati.
Source : Motorsport.com