MotoGP

Ducati’s Miller “coming in hungry” to 2022 MotoGP season

The three-time MotoGP race winner ended last year’s pre-season testing positioning himself as a title contender after a strong winter, but had a troubled start to the 2021 campaign.

Though he would win twice last year, he could do no more than finish fourth in the standings and 61 points adrift of team-mate Francesco Bagnaia in runner-up spot.

Coming into this weekend’s season-opening Qatar Grand Prix, Miller says he “can’t take our eye off the ball” this year and suffer any “lapses” in form.

“I think it’s good to come in a bit hungry, not coming in like last year thinking I’m going to win the championship after the winter test,” Miller said.

“So, it feels good. [I need to] just try and keep my feet on the ground, just try and stay focused, try and understand that we’ve still got a big plate of work ahead of us.

“The season is super long, looks like we’re going to have more of a normal season this year with a lot more races, a lot more travelling.

“We just have to try and stay focused thought the entire lot, we can’t take our eye off the ball.

“I think that’s going to be most important thing to avoid the lapse in the middle of the season or the rocky start, but as I said I’ve been really busy through these tests, nearly 80 laps every day.

Jack Miller, Ducati Team

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

“I’m feeling good, I feel fit, I feel ready to go.”

Ducati’s standing in the 2022 pecking order remains something of a question mark after a fairly low-key pre-season testing phase, with the marque’s top runner at the end of the Indonesia test Luca Marini on his VR46 GP22 in third overall.

Though the new Ducati has been generally met with praise from its riders, the key complaint seems to revolve around the bike’s aggressive acceleration.

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However, Miller is confident “the Ducatis will be strong” come the start of the season in Qatar this weekend.

“I think for sure, you’re silly not to look at the likes of [Enea] Bastianini,” he added.

“He’s been very fast throughout the test [on his Gresini-run 2021-spec Ducati], Marini’s been really quick.

“The list goes on, the field is so full this year and these last couple of years, anyone can win come Qatar.

“For sure the Ducatis will be strong, but Qatar is a whole different kettle of fish.

“I go in there calm, focused on what we need to do. But we just have to approach the weekend as every other one, as we did throughout last year.”


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