Jack Miller dominates the Japanese GP in Motegi to take his first win of the season. Pecco Bagnaia crashes on the last lap
Two Ducati machines finish on the podium at Motegi as Jorge Martin closes third with the Ducati of the Pramac Racing Team
Jack Miller took his third MotoGP victory with the Ducati Lenovo Team in the Japanese GP held this afternoon at the Mobility Resort Motegi. The Australian rider did an outstanding performance in this afternoon’s race, which saw him cross the finish line with more than 3 seconds over Brad Binder. Jorge Martin completed the podium as he finished third with the Ducati Desmosedici GP of the Pramac Racing Team.
Miller, who started from seventh on the grid, from the third row, managed to recover immediately three positions after the start to then take the lead after two laps by making two masterful overtakes on Binder and Martin.
The Australian rider then continued to push by keeping a very high pace, also setting the new race best lap at Motegi in 1’45.198. For Miller, this is his fourth career victory in MotoGP, while today’s win is the eleventh success achieved this season by Ducati, which equals the previous record of victories obtained in the 2007 season.
It was an unlucky day for teammate Pecco Bagnaia who, after qualifying 12th in the wet yesterday, had to make a comeback race today. With a few laps to go Pecco had managed to get close to his direct Championship rival Quartararo, who was eighth, but in an attempt to overtake him on the last lap he made a mistake and fell. Bagnaia is 18 points behind the Frenchman in the Championship standings, while Miller remains fifth with 159 points.
In addition to the Riders’ title, the Team Championship also remains open, with the Ducati Lenovo Team currently leading the overall standings with a 53-point advantage.
Jack Miller (#43 Ducati Lenovo Team) – 1st
“Already from the first session on Friday I felt really comfortable with the Desmosedici GP on this track and today I was able to find the same feelings again. Yesterday I was quite disappointed that I couldn’t to go beyond seventh in qualifying in the wet, conditions in which I am usually competitive, but today in the race it was different. I was able to get a good start and once I got the first position I just went at my own pace. I think I have never ridden so well in my life and this is definitely my best race ever. I’m also very happy that I was able to get another win with the Ducati Lenovo Team, first because the guys on my team always give their all for me and it’s nice to be able to celebrate a third win together.”
Francesco Bagnaia (#63 Ducati Lenovo Team) – Retired
“First, I would like to apologize to my team because today’s crash was only due to my mistake. Compared to this morning’s warm up, I didn’t have a good feeling with the bike and I made an overambitious maneuver in an attempt to overtake Fabio. I was hoping that if I passed him, maybe I could take advantage of a possible mistake by Viñales to make up more ground. In any case, I will reflect on my mistake. The only positive note today was Jack’s victory, which makes me really happy. Now let’s try to stay focused and think about the next race on Sunday in Buriram, Thailand”.
Luigi Dall’Igna (Ducati Corse General Manager)
“I am delighted with Jack’s victory, because he is a wonderful person and one of the strongest riders in MotoGP. He was clearly superior to everyone today: he rode impeccably, making incredible overtakes and keeping a very high pace despite being alone at the front. He really deserved this success! Of course, I am very sorry for Pecco’s crash, but I think it can happen to a rider who is giving everything to win a world title. Now we have to put this race today behind us and continue as if nothing happened.”
The Ducati Lenovo Team riders will be back on track on Friday, 30th September at the Chang International Circuit in Buriram for free practice 1 of the Thai GP.