News 25 Sep 2023

'Not too high, not too low' weekend for Miller in India

Solid sprint race but early moments and grip limit Australian on Sunday.

Image: Supplied.

MotoGP’s first visit to India resulted in a ‘not too high, not too low’ weekend for Jack Miller who was able to deliver a P7 result in the sprint before a more challenging Sunday.

Miller finished Friday’s practice session P18 and 1.179s off pacesetter Luca Marini (Mooney VR46 Racing), before qualifying 16th fastest, just two places behind Red Bull KTM Factory Racing teammate Brad Binder who was the highest-placed RC16 rider.

A great first lap in the sprint from the number 43 saw him up to P7 and by lap four the Australian found himself in sixth after moving past Maverick Vinales (Aprilia Racing Team). Miller was ultimately relegated back to seventh when the hard-charging Marco Bezzecchi came by, but nonetheless, Saturday’s sprint result was a solid step forward from where he qualified.

During Sunday’s grand prix, Miller ran wide at the opening corner which saw him at the back of the field, before another moment resulted in further time lost on the second lap. Struggling for grip, both front and rear, the KTM racer concluded the bout in 14th position to add two more points to his 2023 tally.

“Not too high, not too low this weekend,” Miller recalled. “I struggled today. I didn’t have the grip I needed from the get-go both front and rear. I couldn’t carry any corner speed at all. I had a bit of contact into turn one as well, which wasn’t ideal and then tried to make up too many positions in one go on the second lap.

“It was uphill battle from there and our pace wasn’t anything like Saturday. It is a bit of a head-scratcher. Fingers-crossed we can work on what we found out this weekend and what we tried at the Misano test for Motegi.”

The MotoGP World Championship moves to Motegi this weekend, a venue where Miller has previously been victorious in the premier class. He enters the Japanese GP ninth in the standings.