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Is Ducati teasing special model honouring WorldSBK legend Troy Bayliss?

Ducati announces a 'Special Episode' of its World Premiere launch show but reveals little more than a nod towards WorldSBK legend Troy Bayliss

Troy Bayliss - Ducati WorldSBK 2008


Ducati has announced it will be making a world premiere reveal this week but has given away precious little detail beyond a tell-tale image showing the number plate ‘21’.

Those in the know will immediately recognise this as being the number worn by Ducati’s most successful WorldSBK-racer, Troy Bayliss.

Bayliss won three WorldSBK titles in 2001, 2006 and 2008 - all on Ducati machinery - before calling time on his full-time career at the conclusion of the latter, even if he would go on to enter a handful of races in the ensuing years.

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Describing it as a ‘Special Episode’ of the Ducati World Premiere, the aforementioned launch event usually takes place in October prior to the EICMA show in Milan, with Ducati revealing a litany of new models and updates prior on their own stage before displaying them publicly.

However, it will break with tradition with a new ‘mid-season’ model to be revealed on Thursday 22 July, even if it gives absolutely no detail about what it will be.

Cue some guest-imating from us…

Troy Bayliss - Ducati WorldSBK 2008

With Bayliss’ race number offering up the only clue as to what we can expect, we would hazard a guess to say it will be a special edition Panigale honouring his achievements, which totalled an impressive 52 WorldSBK wins, plus 26 pole positions and 94 podiums, all from a relatively meagre 152 starts.

It shouldn’t be forgotten that Bayliss is also a MotoGP race winner, the Australian famously winning the 2006 Valencia MotoGP when he deputised for the injured Sete Gibernau.

A new special edition model would come after Ducati opened a special Troy Bayliss exhibition at its museum displaying all of his title-winning steeds.

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Playing devil’s advocate for a moment, we ponder whether Bayliss’ own team - Demsosport - could be enlisted with a potential new Ducati WorldSSP team for 2022 when the regulations are anticipated to be opening up next year to allow larger engine models, such as the 959cc Ducati V2, compete.

Desmosport is currently competing in the Australian Superbike Championship with Troy’s son - 17-year old Oli Bayliss - currently running fourth in the standings aboard a Ducati Panigale V4 R.

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