That’s the opinion of Ducati Corse general manager Gigi Dall’Igna, whose Desmosedici machines won 17 of the 20 grand prix races this year.

While Bagnaia beat Yamaha’s Fabio Quartararo to hand Dall’Igna his first MotoGP crown in 2022, the title fight was very different this year with the top three - Bagnaia, Martin and Marco Bezzecchi - all riding Ducatis.

Bagnaia was keeping out of reach of his young pursuers until a massive accident at Barcelona coincided with Martin finding a set-up sweet spot on the GP23.

Martin’s subsequent charge briefly took him into the title lead, but Bagnaia weathered the storm and clinched his second MotoGP crown in the Valencia finale.

“In my opinion, it was a difficult end of the year for him, starting from Barcelona,” Dall’Igna said of Bagnaia’s season. “Jorge was for sure faster than him in many circuits. But for me, Pecco dealt with the pressure well during the season and this is something really important.”

Bagnaia and Martin were among six different Ducati riders to win grand prix races this season, as the Italian factory swept to the riders’ and constructors’ titles and Pramac took the teams’ championship.

“It was an amazing season for us. Some numbers are honestly unbelievable and we are really, really proud of the job we did,” Dall’Igna said.

“I want to say many thanks to the riders, first of all, because they are unbelievable and also all the Ducati Corse employees because they also did a fantastic job during the season.

“For sure we improved quite a lot the bike, above all in some areas where our competitors were good. For example, KTM at the beginning of the season was better than our bike at the starts. So many thanks to the Ducati Corse employees.

“It was a difficult year because we had two riders fighting together for the championship," Dall’Igna added. "We had to give them both the best possibilities to try and win the championship and stay an equal distance between the two.

“For sure, for us, it’s better if Pecco wins at the end, because our sponsors are really important for Ducati Corse. But we have to be sporting, give both of them the best possibilities and that’s what we did.”