It always seemed a little unlikely, but Troy Bayliss has finally quashed rumours (that he poured petrol on in the first place) that he’s going to come out of retirement and lead Ducati to bigger and better things. Announced during World Ducati Week at Misano, the former multiple world champion appears to have realised that being a top superbike pilot isn’t just champagne on the top step of the podium every week – but rather a lot of hard work trying to get the bike to be a world beater. The test at Mugello, after which everything seemed to be on, was followed by a test at Misano where Bayliss struggled and realised that setting a bike up isn’t just a case of dialling a few clicks in here and there.
It’s a desperate shame in one way, as Bayliss surely has plenty to offer Ducati and all his fans, but in many others ways it’s probably for the best – after all, Michael Schumacher isn’t finding things going his own way over in F1. If he can’t come back successfully, can anyone?