Jack Miller says his decision to switch from Ducati to the KTM Factory Racing team ahead of the 2023 MotoGP World Championship was motivated by a legacy of ‘constantly’ having to prove doubters wrong throughout his career.
The Australian has carved a long, successful and at times historic MotoGP career from humble beginnings since making his debut in 2015 via an unconventional - and controversial - direct move from Moto3.
While many predicted he’d flounder on the bigger MotoGP stage at the time, Miller has since gone on to make 138 MotoGP starts, making him the fifth most experienced rider on today’s grid.
Proceeding to write more history with his shock maiden victory in the 2016 Dutch MotoGP at Assen - the first time a MotoGP race has been won on satellite machinery - even then Miller’s switch to Ducati in 2018 was predicted to become his downfall.
Instead, Miller matured into a regular front runner on the Pramac Racing machine, while two seasons on the factory Desmo led to three more victories.
Even so, it is a tenure at Ducati Corse that has continued to draw cynical appraisals when compared alongside Miller’s younger 2022 title-winning team-mate Pecco Bagnaia. Feeding off a pessimism emanating from the firm’s top brass at the time, the negativity sparked the Aussie into sourcing a deal with KTM before he was officially axed by Ducati.
Indeed, Miller says it is this persistent cycle of having to prove himself that motivated him to take a relative gamble on KTM rather than seek a more proven package to make a title tilt.
“I have been constantly doubted and I have been able to constantly prove people wrong throughout my career,” he said.
“Whether it is stepping straight up from Moto3 and people saying I will be gone in a year and here I am nine years later, still going strong. [I was a] factory Ducati rider and was told I would never win in those colours, but I managed to do that.
“I won on an underpowered Honda, the first time that has ever happened, but I still get doubted.
“It is always nice though, the sense of proving people wrong and doing it for yourself - that has been awesome.
“That is what this challenge has always been about, take this step and I thank KTM for giving me the opportunity and the support to do this.
“It gives me an amazing sense of accomplishment.”