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Pramac Racing’s Jack Miller has made a very solid start to the 2019 MotoGP™ campaign. Two P4s in Argentina and France, coupled with a P3 in America, have inevitably got people talking about the factory Ducati seat alongside Andrea Dovizioso that remains up in the air for 2020.
Speaking to motogp.com, Pramac Racing Team Manager Francesco Guidotti discusses Miller’s good start to the season, as well as the Australian’s future.
In 15 mins: French Grand Prix MotoGP™ highlights
“It is clear that Jack wants that place, but you have to see if that place will be there,” comments Guidotti. "Jack has no contract for next year and we have to evaluate other solutions if he wanted to go to the official team or another part if we couldn't meet his needs. We need to have an overview of the market and of those who want to switch from Moto2 to MotoGP having the right credentials to do so. But we do not focus on a rider in particular and we want, if possible, to stay with the current setup. We and Ducati do not have the situation of the riders in hand, they could decide and choose to leave.
"Our priority is to maintain the current line-up with Pecco (Bagnaia) and Miller. But Miller does not agree with me, because he aims at the official Ducati team. It may be that Miller makes ‘the sacrifice’ of staying with us if Ducati does not give him the saddle or, perhaps, that he prefers an official team by abandoning Ducati.
“Let's not forget the sustainability of these proposals, in an economic sense, I say. This is something we absolutely must take into account as a private team. If Miller were to stay with us but his cost would be that of an official rider, we should evaluate. There are so many variables involved. For this, we must be ready and understand the general scenario.”
So, it seems there’s plenty of discussions and decisions to be made surrounding what Miller does in 2020. But taking a step back into 2019, Guidotti shares his thoughts on the 24-year-old’s start to the season.
“A third place and two fourths is a very positive trend. A very positive trend and also in qualifying he’s always been quite incisive, the only GP in which he failed to finish the race was Jerez. But the other four has always been at the highest level.” Of course, Miller failed to finish in Qatar, but that was through no fault of his own and had his seat not of come off, Miller would have been fighting for a top six at least.
Jack Miller, master of the throttle?
But did Pramac expect Miller to have such a strong opening five rounds of the season?
“We were waiting for him, yes. We hoped for it, even more. But it is not a surprise. After last season’s start, switching to the official bike was something he should have done. It was a step he had to take, from good to excellent. The technical support is there and therefore it is good that he exploits it. We are expecting him to continue a little later in the season where last year he had a fairly obvious downturn and this year we want him to keep the pace, a little more constant. A positive start from Jack.
“We would be delighted to confirm him as the best satellite, he could aspire to this beyond the team rankings but for the championship he is still immature a little bit. I saw the two and three times that he found himself fighting for the leading positions and made some errors of evaluation, not riding. These are things that are learned by standing in the front positions. In order to win a World Championship, this type of evaluation must be within you.
“This year he can aspire to a good position in the standings but for the championship, he must make an extra small step. The speed is there, he lacks some experience to be able to manage the race when the opponents are called Marquez and Dovizioso. With much more experience in those positions there.”
Miller: “I felt really strong all weekend”
Time will tell if Miller will be moving to the factory Ducati setup, staying with Pramac or heading elsewhere in 2020.
Read what Guidotti had to say about the rumours of Alex Marquez joining Pramac Racing in 2020, as well as Marquez himself chatting about the talks that have been held between the two parties here.
2 years ago