Ducati has named Bernhard Gobmeier the new general manager of Ducati Corse, handing the former BMW Superbike racing director the reins to the company’s racing program. Gobmeier replaces Filippo Preziosi (pictured above) who will be reassigned to the post of director of research and development for Ducati, shifting his focus from racing to developing new products.
The personnel change carries two storylines. On the one hand, Preziosi’s tenure as GM of Ducati Corse was a disappointing period for the factory MotoGP program, highlighted by the two disastrous seasons with Valentino Rossi and the continuing struggle to make the Desmosedici race bike competitive.
The other plot thread is the appointment of a German to lead the Italian manufacturer’s racing program. Ducati is now, of course, owned by Audi, and the appointment of Gobmeier has the German automaker’s fingerprints all over it. As the official announcement reads, Gobmeier’s role is to “to enter the new phase of development for Ducati’s racing activities and to achieve the targets set during the recent acquisition by the Audi Group.” Continue Reading »