The Ducati Story - Fifth Edition (2011)
The picture of Valentino Rossi on the Ducati Desmosedici GP11 is very alluring for Ducati fans. For those with previous editions, you might find the earlier sections to be repetitive. I purchased the Fifth Edition mainly because I am interested in the newer Ducati motorcycles, probably right after they entered MotoGP in 2003. The older models and designs weren't as appealing to me, and I know many diehard Ducati enthusiasts will probably berate this review for that comment. However, it took me well over 10 years to really get into motorcycles because I felt all of the designs, styling, and technology was either boring, unappealing, or antiquated (carburetors in the late 1990s while every car was MPFI) or a combination of each.
As a result, I skimmed the earlier history of Ducati but took note of the early design cues and elements, especially when the Desmodromic valve system was deployed. I had already learned a great deal about the Desmosedici GP3-GP10 by reading the MotoGP Technology book, but I was curious about some of the production models. The Ducati Story does go into great detail about production models, and the various changes from year to year, but this could also be found on the Internet at various websites or forums. The photographs add depth to the story because the evolution of the Monster (as an example) is evident from the first model to the latest 1100 EVO.
To objectively summarize this book, it would make a great addition to your coffee table but it is far from being a truly comprehensive reference for Ducati. I don't believe the author's intent was to make it comprehensive, and as is, I'd highly recommend the book for anyone that is interested in Ducati.
Overall: 4/5 stars, highly recommended if you want to see some of the history behind the newer production Ducati motorcycles. For Desmosedici GP9-11 or GP11.1/GP12 info, I'd recommend waiting for an update to the MotoGP Technology book.