Jack Miller heads into his 6th MotoGP season in factory colours for the first time with his eyes on the title.
After moving from Moto3 into MotoGP in 2015, Jack Miller has faced a long journey to get into a factory team after battling his way out of the open class onto a more factory Honda RC213V at Marc VDS where he took his first and only win in the premier class, so far…
In 2021 his dream has finally been realised as he donned the red Dainese suit for the first time in the press photos, smiling away like a kid at Christmas. Miller has performed exceptionally well since his move to the Pramac Ducati team in 2018 taking 9 podiums for the satellite team including his first-ever second places in the class in Styria, Valencia and Portimao 2020. He rounded off the 2020 season in a fantastic manner taking 2 podiums in the last duo of rounds of the season, very nearly winning at Valencia until Franco Morbidelli had other ideas and stole Millers first Ducati win from his hands on the last lap.
This form in the 2020 season of a worst result of P9 and 4 podiums in 13 races is not to be scoffed at, he ended the season on a high and will carry this momentum into the new season with the factory team knowing he is fast on a bike which has had it’s development limited due to COVID-19, this means that the bike he will race at Qatar will be incredibly similar to the bike he stood on the podium with at Portimao.
The Ducati GP21 with the ’43’ on the front, there’s something about an Australian rider in Ducati red which just works well
Miller understands what the factory bike entails and means for him, Ducati expect results and race wins and most importantly the title, this has been shown previously with the treatment of Casey Stoner, Jorge Lorenzo and even Andrea Dovizioso who were either unable to achieve their previous title success with the brand or unable to win a title full stop which forced them out of the door. Ducati’s expectations are high and they will stop at nothing to get what they want, after all, wouldn’t you if you were investing millions of € into a sport?
“It’s nice seeing different colours and designs, especially in the factory colours, it’s a dream come true,” said Miller to motogp.com.
“With the regulations, we can’t make big advancements on the bike but we can make fine tunings, this can be good for us as I felt comfortable on the bike at the end of the season. Last year we were unlucky on a few occasions and didn’t make the most of an occasion, but I think having the factory support around me will help in these small areas.”
Miller feels that he is now ready to take on the challenge of fighting for the title, something he has not previously done in the premier class, “This is my 6th year in MotoGP so I think we need to be challenging for the title, we will find out the level of other bikes and riders when the lights go out at Qatar. I am training like a championship contender, it would be nice to get a victory as we were close last year.
“I think I have learned a lot with these experiences but 2016 [Assen 2016 race win] was a long time ago and wet so I want a dry race victory.”
“I’ll be happy if we can challenge for the title at the end of the year, we are going into the year with the mentality of doing everything we can do fight for the championship and it will be nice to bring the championship back to Ducati.”
Featured images – Ducati Media