Jack Miller will start Sunday's Japanese MotoGP from sixth on the grid, as the top Ducati, and with his sights set on a podium finish in Sunday's race.

The Pramac Ducati rider is renowned for his skills in changeable conditions and was duly the first to try slicks in the final practice session.

The Australian was briefly fastest before others on slicks pushed him down to eleventh in FP4. But Miller later revealed that he was on old soft tyres, with one eye on gathering information for the end of what is expected to be a dry race on Sunday.

"We did a lot of laps yesterday on the soft tyres. Then this afternoon [in FP4], everyone else went out on brand new soft tyres and I went out on softs with 17 laps on, just to put a few more laps on them to really understand what they are going to do in the race," explained Miller, who lost much of the fully wet FP3 session due to a technical issue. "So we know where we're at, and I'm looking forward to it."

Miller joined his rivals on new soft rubber for qualifying and felt he had the pace to challenge Marc Marquez for pole position, but was unable to put all the sectors together.

"Second row is decent, we'll take it. But I felt I had a bit more in the tank today. I was putting in good sectors, but I just couldn't seem to string them together - whether it was myself running a little bit wide, or traffic, it just didn't come together," he said.

"I really felt I could have challenged Marc today with our lap times, especially in those conditions. A little bit disappointed with that, but like I said, second row, inside into Turn 1, should be good as long as I don't turn the bike off on the grid again!

"I think we're in a great position for tomorrow's race. The bike's working really well, the team and I have done our homework, so I think we've got a podium challenge in us."

Miller has been on the rostrum three-times so far this season.

Factory Ducati Team riders Andrea Dovizioso and Danilo Petrucci will start just behind Miller in seventh and eighth.



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