The days when tracks clearly suited a certain MotoGP manufacturer look to have more-or-less gone, with the exception - on paper at least - of the Red Bull Ring.

To date, Ducati has won five of the six races held at the horsepower-hungry Austrian venue since it returned to the calendar in 2016.

And while Marc Marquez for example holds a stunning unbeaten record at the Sachsenring, Ducati's Austrian wins have been distributed among three different riders; Andrea Iannone (2016), Andrea Dovizioso (2017, 2019, 2020) and Jorge Lorenzo (2018).

But the Italian factory's perfect run was finally broken in the second of last year's back-to-back rounds, when KTM's Miguel Oliveira beat Pramac Ducati's Jack Miller by just 0.316s after a last corner showdown (also involving Pol Espargaro) during another restarted race.

Miller was arguably the most consistent frontrunner during last year's pair of interrupted grands prix, being the only competitor inside the top three at the end of what turned out to be four shortened races.

The Australian returns to Austria as part of the official factory team and as the only Ducati rider to taste victory so far this season, courtesy of back-to-back wins in Jerez and Le Mans, although two DNFs have dropped him to fifth in the world championship, 56 points from Fabio Quartararo.

"Mixed feelings I think you could say [about the first part of the season]," Miller commented. "I wanted more. We're not too far off. I'm just pissed off with the points I gave away again [at Assen] but definitely looking forward to getting to Austria and having two there."

He added: "Last year I came close to victory. I got on the podium twice, at the Austrian GP where I came third and at the Styrian GP, which I closed in second place.

"This track has always been a happy hunting territory for Ducati, but I expect tough competition this year. Anyway, we will do our best to be at the front and end the weekend on a high".

Team-mate Francesco Bagnaia may still be seeking a first MotoGP victory, but his consistency has carried him to third in the standings, 13 points behind Pramac's Johann Zarco and 47 from Yamaha's Quartararo.

The Italian missed the 2020 Austrian rounds due to injury but it also more than aware of Ducati's track record at the Red Bull Ring.

"This long five-week break has really helped me recharge my batteries, and now I'm ready for the second half of the season. I'm really looking forward to getting back on my Desmosedici GP and, above all, to racing in Austria again," Bagnaia said.

"Last year, I had to sit out both races held here because of my leg injury [at Brno]. At the Red Bull Ring in 2019, in my debut year in MotoGP, I had managed to finish seventh at the Austrian GP, while Ducati has won five of the six races held so far at this track, so I'm sure that we have all that we need to fight for a good result on Sunday!

"I'm determined to get off on the right foot in this second half of the championship".