Jack Miller: “It could have been an amazing result…”

When KTM team-mate Brad Binder ran wide, Jack Miller took over the Valencia race lead and looked on course to make history as the first MotoGP winner on three different brands of bike.
Jack Miller, MotoGP race, Valencia MotoGP, 26 November
Jack Miller, MotoGP race, Valencia MotoGP, 26 November

But it ended in disaster when, after leading for 5 laps, Miller was caught out at the same Turn 10 as Binder.

While the South African had at least been able to rejoin and later salvaged a podium after Fabio di Giannantonio’s tyre pressure penalty, a crestfallen Miller was down and out.

“Not much to say. I didn’t do much different compared to the previous lap. I’d had a few moments with the front so decided to take it easy and not do anything too savage and, yeah, she just got away from me,” Miller said.

"I didn't even get to grab the brakes yet, she disappeared from underneath me and that was all she wrote.

"I had a little cry and it's one of those ones where it got away.

"But we pushed so hard and we've been working our arse off, not only the last couple of weeks, all year.

“It could have been an amazing result… But like I said: Could have been. But we’ll take stock and bounce back.

“It's a bittersweet way to end because it’s nice to know we have pace and we’re heading in the right direction.

“We have been working our butts off. The rider is just one small part because there is so much going on behind the scenes.

“Everyone has worked tirelessly, so I thank them all for that.”

Ducati's Francesco Bagnaia took over the lead after Miller's lap 19 exit and went on to claim his second MotoGP title with a race victory.

"Lap by lap by lap you could feel it getting cooler. But we're racing in the last weekend of November, so that can be expected," Miller said.

"I'm not going to blame that [for the crash], it was the same conditions for everybody and Pecco managed to stay on the bike and win the race and win the championship.

"So we'll learn from this and try to improve for next year."

Binder, who has lost two podiums this year due to post-race penalties for exceeding track limits, said:

“A 3rd place is a 3rd place, even if we didn’t actually go to the podium! I gave away a couple of podiums this year, so I know it’s not fun. Anyway, quite cool to finish in 3rd after coming close.

“I took an un-needed Long Lap [when I ran wide] but did well to save the crash because the front tyre had been cooling down.

“A tricky day. I tried to fight my way back through but had no rear tyre left at the end.

“We won two Sprints this year but it would have been good to sign off with a main victory. We just need a little bit more in this off-season to fight.

“Thanks to all my crew. We’ve made a big step this year and there’s more to come.”

Binder set a new KTM high with fourth in the riders’ standings, with the factory finishing second to Ducati in the constructors, despite not winning a grand prix.

Miller might have claimed ninth in the standings if he had won but instead finished the season in eleventh, 9 points from Fabio Quartararo (11th on Sunday) and 14 points from Alex Marquez (6th).

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