"I won’t lie & say everything was rosy": Jack Miller takes aim at Ducati MotoGP

Jack Miller says he'd become 'sick and tired' of justifying himself for one-year contracts as sharpens his aim at Ducati ahead of KTM switch for 2023 MotoGP

Jack Miller - Ducati MotoGP

A frustrated Jack Miller has opened up about his experience within the factory Ducati MotoGP team, admitting he had become ‘sick and tired’ of justifying himself to management to secure one-year deals.

The Australian is coming towards the conclusion of a five season tenure with the Italian manufacturer - the latter two spent in factory colours - before he makes the switch to KTM for the 2023 MotoGP World Championship season.

Promoted alongside Pecco Bagnaia to a full factory Ducati Corse seat ahead of the 2021 MotoGP season after three front-running campaigns on the satellite Pramac bike, Miller was earmarked as the team leader relative to less experienced team-mate.

However, it was Bagnaia that would emerge as the manufacturer’s primary title contender - both in 2021 and 2022 - with Miller admitting the Italian ‘stole the reins’ from him in terms of status within the team.

While he doesn’t begrudge Bagnaia personally, he suggests being an Australian paired with an Italian in an Italian team presented hurdles at times, a factor he believes influenced the decision to hire Enea Bastianini for the 2023 MotoGP season.

“He has really taken the role of team leader,” he told MotoGP.com in the honest manner he has become renowned for during his time in the premier class. 

“He stole the reins off me and has taken it strongly - I’ll admit to that. He’s done better than what I could in these past couple of years, not through a lack of trying, obviously.

“I think you’d struggle to find a team-mate as easygoing as me. At the end of the day, I’m an outsider here. 

“I’m an Australian inside an Italian team. I don’t speak the language so you do get put on the outside.

“But, you know, with the two Italians in an Italian team? I mean, I don’t want to say too much…”

“I was sick and tired" of one-year MotoGP contracts

Though overshadowed by Bagnaia, Miller has enjoyed his best MotoGP seasons with Ducati Corse, landing two wins en route to a career-best fourth overall in 2021, while a recent rich vein of form of five podiums in the last eight rounds - including a dominant win in Japan - has hauled Miller into outside 2022 title contention with three events remaining.

However, with Ducati openly heaping praise on proteges Jorge Martin and Bastianini at the start of the year, while swerving opportunities to talk up Miller’s performances, the 27-year old admits he had become frustrated at having to continuously justify himself to the team just to secure a short-term deal.

“ I’m not going to sit here and lie and say everything was rosy,” he continues.

“I was getting tired of one-year contracts. Having to justify myself in Qatar every single year, why I deserve the job, why I deserve to have my position, and getting questioned by not only the media, but everybody.

“I was sick and tired of justifying why I should be wanted.”

Famously making his MotoGP debut in 2015 after making an unprecedented leap from Moto3, Miller has gone on to become a familiar front-runner and fan favourite.

After scoring a shock first win in the wet at Assen in 2016 on the privateer Marc VDS Honda, Miller has gone on to add three more victories to his tally, plus 22 podiums.

For the 2023 MotoGP season he will join Brad Binder in the KTM Factory Racing team.