The Italian slipped 28 points behind Suzuki’s Joan Mir after his worst back-to-back events of the season last time at Aragon, where Dovizioso failed to reach Qualifying 2 on either occasion and went on to collect just 12 out of a possible 50 points.
But fortunes often change quickly this season, Dovizioso himself turning an 11th place finish at Brno into victory the following weekend in Austria. And while frequently warning they are simply not fast enough to fight for the title, amid ongoing difficulties adapting to the new spec rear tyre, the #4 insists “everything can still happen”.
“The two races at MotorLand Aragón were tough for us; we struggled a lot, and of course we didn’t get the results we were expecting,” said Dovizioso.
“After a week off, we return to the track with more motivation; there are only three races left in the Championship, and we know that everything can still happen.
“This year, each grand prix has its own story. I still have three races with Ducati and, as always, I will try all my best till the end”.
Ducati’s most recent Valencia victory was a wet weather win by Dovizioso in 2018, also Dovi’s only podium at the circuit with the Desmosedici.
Team-mate Danilo Petrucci will also be leaving Ducati after the Portimao finale although in contrast to Dovizioso the #9’s plans, a move to Tech3 KTM, have been signed and sealed for months.
Petrucci’s also won a race this year, but is just eleventh in the standings and managed no better than 10th place at Aragon. However, a recent test by Michele Pirro at Valencia has provided some optimism for the upcoming double-header.
“We left Aragón behind, and now we are focused on the next two races in Valencia. The Circuit Ricardo Tormo is not one of our ideal race tracks, but this year it is complicated to make any predictions before taking to the track,” Petrucci said.
“Michele Pirro was here for a test a few days ago, and the feedback was quite positive, so we arrive in Spain with interesting data at our disposal.
“These next three Grands Prix for sure will be demanding, but I am determined to let that these three last races with Ducati will leave us positive memories.”