Miller ‘starting to really gel’ with 2022 Ducati MotoGP bike

Jack Miller. Picture: MotoGP.com

Jack Miller says he is “starting to really gel” with the Ducati Desmosedici GP22 ahead of the European phase of the MotoGP season.

The Queenslander got his first podium of the season last time out at the Circuit of The Americas, when he finished third, behind Enea Bastianini and Suzuki’s Alex Rins.

Bastianini was also on a Desmosedici, but his is the GP21 model, which he also took to victory in Round 1 of the campaign at Qatar’s Lusail circuit.

The Gresini Racing rider’s performance relative to his counterparts at the Ducati Lenovo Team and also Pramac Racing, which runs GP22s, has questions about the Bologna factory’s latest-spec bike.

There was also the late change of engine specification for factory duo Miller and Francesco Bagnaia, who reverted to something of a hybrid of 2021 and 2022 specifications, while Pramac stuck with the latter.

However, ‘Jackass’ is now feeling more comfortable with his bike, as he embarks on this weekend’s Portuguese Grand Prix in seventh in the championship.

“It’s nice to come into the European season, let’s say, with the ball rolling a little bit,” he said.

“[It has been a] Bumpy start, as it generally is for me and the championship, but [I’ve] got the ball rolling now we’ve got some good tracks coming up.

“[I’m] Starting to really gel with my bike, understanding it more and more every weekend.”

Miller led from the first corner until midway through Lap 16 of 20 in the Grand Prix of the Americas, after which he faded to third.

Reflecting on that, he remarked, “[We] know what we need to do, where we need to work on; that kind of thing.

“But, all in all, just happy, going through the motions, trying to do the same thing we did in Austin, which was just put together a solid weekend, and I think that gives you the confidence.

“It brings you the confidence for Sunday’s race; you know, we ran out of steam a little bit there [at COTA] but it was definitely a building block on what we need to do for the races coming forward.”

Practice at Portimao starts tonight (AEST).

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