Jack Miller crashes but vows “I reckon we’ve got a little more in the pocket…”

Jack Miller drops a major hint that KTM haven't yet shown off their true competitiveness

Jack Miller
Jack Miller

Jack Miller was among the MotoGP riders who crashed on the opening day of the Qatar test but it still didn’t wipe the smile off his face.

The KTM rider ended the opening day of the preseason test on Monday dropping hints that his bike hasn’t yet shown its potential.

Miller was 14th-fastest on Monday in Qatar, while teammate Brad Binder was fourth.

Miller explained his minor crash: “I had a slight fall at Turn 6. Nothing major.

“Coming in, as I down-shifted it started vibrating, I committed to it anyway. I dumped it.

“I picked the bike up, she was a bit twisted, but I was still able to put a lap together.

“I wasn’t going to go back to the box with two new tyres in it!

“So we managed to put a lap together with bent handlebars.”

The KTM has been identified by many interested observers as the likeliest bike to compete with the dominant Ducatis in the early rounds of the 2024 MotoGP season.

Miller couldn’t hide his optimism when speaking on Monday after the first of two days testing.

“The bike is working well here,” he said.

“I’m very happy with how the aero worked today in tricky, windy conditions. It’s pretty exposed here.

“To have that ticked off the list is good.

“[We are] going over what we found out in Malaysia.

“I’m really happy with the direction of the bike and I reckon we’ve got a little more in the pocket…”

Jack Miller, Qatar MotoGP test, 19 February
Jack Miller, Qatar MotoGP test, 19 February

With just one day left of preseason testing before the season begins in Qatar on March 8, how ready are KTM?

“We’re ready. I think so,” Miller insisted.

“Malaysia was a lot more hectic than here.

“Here it’s pretty settled. We’ve made most of the decisions.

“Now it’s just a case of making sure the decisions are the correct ones so we’re not second-guessing ourselves.

“Hopefully, in a perfect world, the bike should stay the same. And we don’t have to rip this out, that out…

“I’m pretty happy with the base package today.

“The electronic upgrades have been a massive boost to the performance, for sure.

“Not only on the used tyre, but in time attack mode as well.”

The early hours of Monday were a frustrating wait for some MotoGP riders who didn’t want to make use of the dusty, daylight hours.

“I didn’t mind. Everybody was in the same boat,” Miller said.

“We had to get out there and clean the track.

“The front tyres had massive graining on the right-hand side, everybody that I saw coming in, myself included.

“It’s just a necessary evil around here.

“The conditions got to be pretty good towards the end of the test.

“I had a little go at a time attack at the end.”

Read More