Ducati Lenovo Team records a historical and emotional triumph with Jack Miller and Pecco Bagnaia.
The feeling of succeeding for your first time is extremely memorable and emotional. For Jack Miller, it was a day full of memories to cherish as the Australian stood on the top step of the MotoGP podium for the first time in five years and the first time as a factory Ducati rider. With two muted races, dramatic incidents, surgery, and a crash last time out on the run, up till the Gran Premio Red Bull de España, Jack Miller’s emotions in parc ferme was more than just a moment of joy.
The Ducati Lenovo Team rider put on a masterclass through the Circuito de Jerez-Ángel Nieto. He fought it out at the top to cross the chequered flag first ahead of teammate Francesco “Pecco” Bagnaia and Petronas Yamaha SRT’s Franco Morbidelli.
Miller has admitted in recent weeks that he’s been in the trenches following a disappointing start to the year, but he was certainly gritting his teeth and digging in. Monster Energy Yamaha’s Fabio Quartararo was only able to go a tenth quicker than the Ducati man and the gap was at three-quarters of a second with seven laps completed. As the Frenchman edged his lead out to over a second for the first time, Aleix Espargaro slipped a place back to fifth after falling into the crosshairs of Bagnaia’s Ducati down the back straight too. But as one Ducati rider moved forward, another crashed out: rookie Enea Bastianini (Avintia Esponsorama) hit the deck at Turn 2 – his first DNF of the year, although he continues leading the Rookie of the Year standings.
It was indeed a day Jack Miller will remember forever. The MotoGP paddock heads over to the classic Le Mans circuit in just two weeks’ time for the French Grand Prix.
Jack Miller (Ducati Lenovo Team)- As It Happened
It’s a flood of emotions: happy, sad, everything. I wish my parents were here to celebrate it with me but they’re back at home, I know they’ll be celebrating. I want to thank everyone for all their support, I’ll try to do it again soon.”
“The last two weeks have been tough for me: I couldn’t trust myself and what I can do on the bike. Today, when I saw Quartararo struggling, I thought I could try to take the lead, even though I wasn’t so confident that I could stay in the lead for so many laps.
Francesco Bagnaia (#63 Ducati Lenovo Team)- As It Happened
Luigi Dall’Igna (Ducati Corse General Manager)
“I think I’m the happiest person in the world right now: Jerez has always been a difficult track for the Ducati bikes, so to be able to finish first and second today is crucial for us, especially from a technical point of view. Both riders had a sensational race and were fantastic. They knew how to run a mature race: Jack kept a good rhythm and perfectly managed the race, while Pecco did an incredible performance, ending second and taking now the championship lead. Congratulations to both of them, to the team and all of Ducati Corse”.
Tomorrow the Ducati Lenovo Team will take to the track once again at Jerez de la Frontera for a day of post-race testing.