News 19 Oct 2017

Miller eyes top five finish in home grand prix at Phillip Island

North Queenslander confident of another strong result this weekend.

Words: Russell Colvin

Image: Russell Colvin.

It’s been a busy couple of weeks for Australia’s very own Jack Miller, that’s for sure. Miller, who fractured his right tibia in a trials accident before the 15th round of the MotoGP World Championship has expressed that he is feeling pretty good ahead of this weekend’s Michelin Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix.

Three days after Miller’s operation he was back up on his feet and on the exercise bike: “I was putting in longer and longer stints on the exercise bike,” explained Miller, who was visited Old Melbourne Gaol on Wednesday.

“When I came back to Australia last week I got to venture out on the bicycle. Since then I have been able to continue my normal training regime. I got 230km last week on the pushbike, so it was pretty good with my leg considering the injury.”

While Miller is feeling good ahead of this weekend’s third-last round of the championship, he does know that he is going to have to work a little bit more to get a bit more fluid out of his leg and get range and motion through the leg over the weekend, but believes it shouldn’t be too much of a problem.

So when Miller broke his tibia, did he ever think there was any doubt that he would have got for his home round? “Of course. Once the initial injury had happened, I thought that. In saying that, I didn’t feel too bad to be honest. Even directly after the operation I wasn’t in a plaster and was able to move my leg straight away.”

In fact, Miller said he could have probably have made it back for Japan last weekend. However, common sense came in and he thought with three races to go after Japan, being close together, he didn’t want to start the three fly-away races on the back-foot and end up chasing his tail for the rest of season.

“I missed out on Japan, but I have been working on being in the best condition that I could be for Phillip Island and I feel that I have done that,” declared the 22-year-old.

Miller wasn’t that disappointed about missing out on the Motegi round, because of the weather. This weekend at the Island is looking to be tad on the wet side as well: “Yes this weekend looks like it could be pretty similar, but not as bad as Japan. A bit of wet weather doesn’t bother me too much, but we’ll just have to wait and see what the weather does anyway.”

Miller has explained that the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit is an awesome race track for him. It’s his favourite track, which is why he has always done well there. After qualifying fifth and finishing 10th last year, he has speed on his side at home.

“I look forward to up holding my record let’s say or my string of good results that I have had there,” he added. “I want to go there this weekend and really push for a top five result.”

A top five is a realistic goal, but a big one. Miller has finished sixth twice this year and thinks Phillip Island seems like it could be the place that he could be able to crack that top five position: “We have to wait to get there and see how everything is working and take it as it comes.”