After finding a solution to his issues in between FP4 and Q2, Jack Miller (Alma Pramac Racing) will start from the front row of the grid for the third time this season in P3. But it could have been even better:
Miller: "I got as close as I could to a perfect lap"
“I’m semi-satisfied. I expected more,” admitted the Australian, who was going even quicker than his fastest time before crashing at Turn 5. “I’m surprised to be on the front row but I did the lap time on the first run of tyres and we know that the first lap is not really the optimum lap for the tyres. So the second lap was going to be a good one but I pushed too hard into Turn 5 and locked the front. I was going in way too fast and I just tried to continue and see what would happen, and what happened was I landed on my bum.”
Nonetheless, a P3 starting slot is a positive result for Miller, who has had good pace all weekend: “We learned from this today but, in general, all weekend we’ve had good pace and we’ve been pushing really hard. Here, in Motegi, it’s really hard because the track has so many braking zones that it’s very difficult to make a perfect lap but today I feel like I got as close as I could to doing a perfect lap.”
The last time the number 43 started on the front row was Misano, a race which ended with Miller crashing in the early stages. A repeat will hopefully go amiss in Japan, but what is the Ducati rider’s aim? Well, sticking with the lead group is the first target, as well as trying to help Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) stop Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) win the title this weekend.
Motul Grand Prix of Japan: MotoGP™ Q2
“We had good race pace in FP4 already, I felt comfortable. We made a step after FP4 for qualifying and I feel this is where a lot of the speed came from as well. We’ll wait and see. I hope that Andrea can have a good race and stay in the championship for another week and, for us, I hope we can do a good job. It’s difficult to say because there are a lot of fast guys out there and I think if we can stay in the front group and see what happens, and try not to make the same mistake as in Misano.”
The fight at the front looks set to be an intense one at the Twin Ring Motegi. Can Miller get a good launch to keep himself in contention of securing a second premier class podium?
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