After a first difficult year in World SBK alongside Ducati, Francis Batta gives up.
2013 started in the best way possible, an incredible best lap time in Australia, but continued in the worse possible manner, severe injury for Checa and a 1199 Panigale struggling in the mid positions of championship.
As I wrote yesterday about Spies back in WSBK, if he will take this option, the American will team up with Chaz Davies which now rides the official BMW.
This won't be the only news about the Ducati team in 2014, interviewed by Corriere dello Sport, Francis Batta anticipated the divorce with the Borgo Panigale manufacturer:
It was a disastrous year and it's not riders' fault. The development of the bike was very slow and the sponsors start to abandon us. Regarding the fact that I must cover the biggest part of the team's budget I don't think that there are any prerequisites required to continue the partnership with Ducati in 2014.
If so, Ducati could rely on Feel Racing, a team that also has its' HQ in Bologna and which in this moment supports the official BMW team.
There are rumors about Ducati trying to play hard on the transfer market, names like Gigi Dall'Igna and Masao Furusawa being speculated to convince Batta change his mind.