After a torrid start to life in Factory Ducati red, Jack Miller has made the last two GP’s count, taking his first dry weather win in Jerez and following it up with a stunning display of skill and bravery in MotoGP’s first flag-to-flag race since 2017 in Le Mans. With his 2021 season finally starting to deliver the promise it heralded in pre-season testing, Jack Miller continues to ride a wave of exultation, as it has today been announced that he will be continuing with the Factory Ducati Lenovo Team into the 2022 season.
Miller is currently holding 4th in the championship, standing just 16 points down from Fabio Quartararo, who took the lead in Le Mans. His back-to-back victories have also ensured that Ducati and the Ducati Lenovo Team lead the Constructors and Team championship standings. Maverick Vinales of the factory Yamaha Monster Energy team tipped Miller to be a surprise contender in this year’s championship. As it stands, his early prediction is starting to ring true.
This week, we head into the famous Mugello circuit, which has long been heralded as a Ducati favoured circuit due to its monstrously long straight. On the high of back-to-back victories, plus the extension of his contract, could Jack Miller make it three victories in a row this weekend?
Here is what Jack Miller himself had to say about his new contract with the Factory Ducati team:
I am thrilled to be able to continue my adventure with the Ducati Lenovo Team also next season! Wearing these colours is a great honour for me, and having been able to win the last two races on the Desmosedici GP is a real dream! It wouldn’t have been possible without the great support that I’ve received from Ducati and the whole team during the last months, and I want to thank Gigi, Paolo, Davide, and Claudio for the faith they had in me. Now I can solely concentrate on the current season. We are fourth in the standings, not far from the leader, and the Championship is still very long. I will do my best to continue this positive trend and fight for the title. Forza Ducati!Jack Miller
Ever a popular figure in the MotoGP paddock, it has been difficult to watch Miller’s early struggles inside the Factory Ducati squad, especially so as his teammate Francesco ‘Pecco’ Bagnaia has gone from strength to strength thus far this season, having finished inside the top 6 in every race. Nevertheless (and in shocking departure to last year’s displays of callous treatment of their riders), the Ducati management has stood by Miller, despite the early disappointments, and their patience has been mightily rewarded.
Speaking of the Ducati leadership, this is what Luigi Dall’Igna (Ducati Corse General Manager) had to say about continuing on with Jack Miller:
We are delighted to be able to announce that we will continue with Miller also in 2022. In this first season, Jack has shown great talent, professionalism, and strong determination. He was able to secure two important victories in different conditions after a tough start to the season. For sure, he is one of the riders that better knows how to understand our Desmosedici GP to fully take advantage of its potential in any condition, as the recent success in Le Mans has demonstrated. As always, our goal remains the Championship title, and we believe that with Jack and Pecco, we will be among the main protagonists of the 2022 title charge.Luigi Dall’Igna
It would seem that Ducati are thrilled that the gamble they took in 2020 of promoting unprecedentedly young talent to lead their line-up is paying off. Both their men are very much embroiled in this year’s championship battle, and to have both Jack Miller and Pecco Bagnaia already confirmed for 2022, should ensure that their confidence will remain steady as they fight for the crown this year. We are, of course, only 5 rounds into the 2021 championship, but I believe that Ducati has made the ride choice by taking early steps to confirm their rider lineup. As such, I would expect both Bagnaia and Miller to be fighting at the sharp end in this upcoming Mugello race.
This article was written by the fantastic Rebekah Lee, our resident Motorsport nut and MA Creative writing graduate. She’s been fascinated by all things motorsports since childhood – follow her on Twitter at @bekahjlee
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