Jack Miller says he “adapted easier than I expected” to KTM’s RC16 machine after the Aussie tested the bike for the first time in last week’s post-season test in Valencia.
Miller will join the factory KTM squad for 2023 having been let go by the Ducati team he spent the last two campaigns with – across which he managed to win a total of three races – with the one-day test at the Circuit Ricardo Tormo giving him a chance to sample his new steed ahead of the longer pre-season outings in Malaysia and Portimao early next year.
He ended the day 17th on the timesheets 0.755s adrift of Luca Marini’s benchmark having completed a total of 70 laps, his best time of 1:30.787s just under a second away from his qualifying effort for the preceding weekend’s Valencia Grand Prix, though he conceded he was unable to complete a proper qualifying run due to a lack of new tyres.
Miller was ultimately left encouraged by his first running with the RC16 though, labelling his day as “a lot of fun” having “adapted easier than I expected” following a total of five seasons campaigning Ducati’s Desmosedici prototype.
“It was a lot of fun, the weather was fantastic for testing today,” explained Miller.
“The wind picked up a bit but we could get out on track quite early and ride right until the end of the session putting in a lot of laps, I had fun.
“I adapted easier than I expected, after being on another bike so such a significant amount of time I felt pretty comfortable off the get-go and just played around with it for the rest of the day.
“I felt relative comfortable by the end of the day, I was happy with how we finished up.
“Unfortunately we couldn’t do a time attack, my best time was on a medium (compound tyre) and the soft we had to do a lot of work with so we weren’t able to post a time in anger, but nonetheless I’m happy with the result.”
Miller ended his final year in Ducati colours fifth in the riders standings having scored a dominant fourth career victory in the Japanese GP at Motegi, though a tricky last few outings – culminating in two crashes from the final three events – meant that ’23 team-mate Brad Binder ended up just a single point adrift of him overall.