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Intervento dell’Ambasciatore d’Italia, Gianluigi Benedetti, in occasione dell’evento “Ducati” (Tokyo, 26 settembre 2023)

Caro Ing. Paolo CIABATTI, Ducati Corse Sporting Director, Dear Mats LINDSTROM, President of Ducati Japan, Dear “Ducatisti” in Japan, Ladies and Gentlemen.

Let me welcome back, all of you, to the Residence of the Italian Ambassador in Tokyo.

My wife Sabina and I are pleased to host again this special event dedicated to the  most iconic brand among racing motorcycles, which has captivated hearts and minds since 1926: Ducati.

Around the world – and in Japan as well – Ducati’s identity is synonymous of engineering excellence, superior mechanics and powerful engines. It is cutting-edge technology, innovation and safety.

Ducati is also design and elegance: the iconic red livery, accompanied by the unmistakable trellis frame, have made this Italian brand an instantly recognizable symbol of the “Made in Italy” as well as style and attitude across the world.

I am sure that entering into this Residence you have noticed the three beautiful motorcycles on display this evening: the “Panigale”, the “Multistrada V4S”, and the “New Scrambler”. Let me proudly say that they are the most loved and desired motorbikes in the world.

As we all know, 2022 was an incredible year for the Bologna-based company that achieved the title of World Champion in both “MotoGP” and “World Superbike” in the same season for the first time in its history.

For the “MotoGP” the success was twofold: number one in both constructors and riders’ championship. It was the first all-Italian World Title since 1972, 50 years after Giacomo Agostini with the MV Agusta in the 500cc class.

We owe all this to the exceptional work of Paolo Ciabatti, Pecco Bagnaia, the engineers and all members of the teams… and to the legendary “Desmosedici GP”, which made our dreams come true!

This is indeed a great source of pride and inspiration for the “Ducatisti” all over the world. Even more in Japan, where the competition with the local brands is very high and extremely challenging.

Tonight we are all here to celebrate Ducati and, of course, to cheer and support Pecco and Michele Pirro, who will be racing in Motegi this weekend. Gambatte Kudasai!

This is also the chance to wish Enea Bastianini a speed and full recovery after the accident in Catalunya. We hope that next year he will be here with us! Enea: this big round of applause is for you.

Let me conclude by saying that last year the “Daruma” ceremony was successfully carried out and the Japanese tradition was fulfilled. At the Embassy, we still jealously preserve and proudly exhibit it.

In the same spirit, we will repeat tonight the “Daruma” ceremony, so to wish Ducati and our pilots all the best for the Japan Grand Prix and for the last 7 races in 2023.

Forza Pecco and Forza Michele! Forza Ducati!