Keeping Track #33: Miller’s eyes on the prize

MillerCornerJerezRising Australian motorcycle star Jack Miller insists persistent speculation about a possible move to MotoGP next season won’t distract him from his goal of winning this year’s Moto3 championship.

The 19-year-old from Townsville has been a revelation in the first half of the season in MotoGP’s entry-level category. Riding for the Red Bull KTM Ajo outfit, Miller won his maiden Grand Prix in Qatar before taking victory in three more races before the mid-season break to enjoy a 19-point lead over Alex Marquez, the younger brother of MotoGP sensation Marc Marquez.

Miller’s rapid rise has seen his signature keenly sought by several front-running Moto2 teams for 2015, while speculation continues to link the Australian with a MotoGP ride for the LCR Honda team, which gave Casey Stoner his premier-class start in 2006.

Speaking to the ‘Keeping Track’ podcast, Miller says Red Bull KTM Ajo team boss Aki Ajo – who doubles as Miller’s personal manager – has allowed him to direct his energies towards this year’s Moto3 title.

“I’m so fortunate to have a manager in Aki in there at the moment doing the job for me; I don’t have any stress,” Miller said.

“For me, there’s no extra pressure – as long as I’m riding a bike next year and it’s in this (world) championship, I’ll be happy. For me, I don’t really know where I’ll be yet, and I don’t really care as long as I’m on a motorcycle.”

After finishing seventh in last year’s Moto3 championship, Miller has set a searing pace this season on a KTM, taking five pole positions in nine Grands Prix and finishing no lower than fourth in races where he’s seen the chequered flag.

He says the team run by Ajo – which propelled Marc Marquez to the 2010 125cc title and German Sandro Cortese to the Moto3 crown in 2012 – have been crucial in his development.

“You learn so much more with these guys than I have in the last two years that I’ve had in Grand Prix racing,” he said.

“It’s such a great environment, it’s a well-rounded crew with knowledge to teach me what they know. If I could take them with me for the rest of my career, I’d love to do it.”

Miller also spoke about being seen as Australia’s next great two-wheel prospect, his likely championship rivals for the rest of the season, and his ambitions to improve on a fifth-place finish at the Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix at Phillip Island last year.

Listen here – and leave your feedback.

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