Avintia Racing rider Hector Barbera will switch from blue to red this weekend at Motegi. From tomorrow on, he is going to ride injured Andrea Iannone’s Ducati Team Desmosedici GP. Riding the official version of his own successful Desmosedici 14.2. is a big chance for the Spaniard and also a reward for his great season so far with Avintia Racing. At the same time, this race weekend is a welcome opportunity to test and familiarize himself with the bike he will be riding next season for Avintia.
In Avintia Racing, Barbera will be replaced with Australian Mike Jones, who will give his debut in the MotoGP class in Japan. Jones is Australian Superbike Champion 2015 and finished fifth overall this season riding for Desmo Sport Ducati Team, the structure of the former Australian World Superbike champion and MotoGP winner Troy Bayliss.
“I’m really happy. I have been waiting for this opportunity for many years and finally my dream comes true this weekend. First of all I want to say big thanks to Avintia for allowing me to join the factory team, because without their support and all the sponsors behind the team this wouldn’t be possible. Right now I feel excited, motivated and eager to get the best possible result. But until I jump on the bike tomorrow, I keep scratching myself because it’s so hard to believe. Today I did interviews and this kind of the things like a factory rider, but I still feel like a child on Christmas day and it takes time to realise that it is the reality and not only a dream. I’m sure this will be a special weekend and I will do everything in my power to justify Ducati’s faith in me with a good result”.