Jack Miller: KTM engineers “listen to everybody, not just one, that’s their job”

Jack Miller explains how KTM are developing their 2024 bike at the MotoGP Sepang test

Jack Miller, Sepang MotoGP test, 6 February
Jack Miller, Sepang MotoGP test, 6 February

Jack Miller insists that the ‘24 KTM will be developed from feedback from every rider, with nobody prioritised.

The addition of the highly-touted Pedro Acosta to the Tech3 GASGAS team - at the expense of Pol Espargaro - has heightened the competition within the KTM ranks.

Acosta was notably third-fastest on the first day of MotoGP testing in Sepang, while Brad Binder was 12th and Miller 18th.

Binder was the manufacturer’s top rider last year, he was the closest to the title-chasing Ducati trio, but Miller insists that it’s a level playing field in terms of building their 2024 bike.

“The workload will always be there because we all try the same gear,” Miller said after the first day of testing in Sepang.

“But it helps to get four different inputs, six inputs with Dani Pedrosa and Pol.

“We have a fantastic set-up now with great riders.

“They are not just listening to one, they listen to everybody.

“And trying to piece it together. That’s their job. To listen to every riders’ feedback and to piece it together, to try and translate it into reality. They have been busy.”

KTM possess test rider Pedrosa - who shone as a wildcard last season - and demoted Espargaro from full-time racer to another test role. It is an unrivalled duo of non-racing riders who can help in developing the bike.

Miller entered the preseason Sepang test revealing that he broke his scaphoid bone in a motocross accident over the Christmas period.

But he insists that he didn’t feel it when riding in Sepang on Tuesday: “It felt good.

“My biggest concern, basically, was the angles. These bloody things, we touch everything on the ground nowadays.

“The wrist felt mega from the get-go. That was a big sigh of relief for me.”

Jack Miller
Jack Miller

Miller rode his ‘23 and ‘24 bikes on the first of three days testing, trialling various “engine specs, aero specs, electronics specs”.

He said: “We played around a lot with the two bikes and different configurations. That’s the biggest thing now, trying to piece it together before we get to Qatar.

“This is the most crucial point of the area to understand the direction, and to make some big decisions.

“So, really, we’re just trying to take on as much work as possible, and to get through it as clearly and precisely as possible.”

A noticeable difference was the very short exhaust, in place of the much longer version used last year.

“It looks a lot nicer! It changes the engine characteristics,” Miller said.

“Always, when you play around with the exhaust pipes. People have been doing it since there was an engine built, basically.

“When you play with the exhaust pipe length… they obviously found something in their data to say that this is the direction we should be working in.”

Miller summarised his Tuesday testing: “Day 1, busy first day for me, 69 laps. The boys brought plenty of items for me to try, and to play around with.

“The bike is working really well, it felt really good. We hit the ground running.

“I tried a time attack in the afternoon but didn’t get what I wanted. It’s testing. We’ll keep plugging away at it.

“I’m happy with the direction that we’re going with the bike in terms of everything - engine, electronics, aero.

“The boys had a really busy winter and did a fantastic job.

“69 laps today, the body is feeling pretty knackered, I was cramping up at the end! I’ll sleep well tonight.”

Miller will return on Wednesday for the second of three days.

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