Miller didn’t “believe” that French MotoGP would be penalized in long laps

The Ducati rider was caught driving into the pit lane when it started raining on Sunday’s fifth lap of the 27-lap race at Le Mans.

Both he and Ducati team-mate Francesco Bagnaia had to accept two long lap penalties for exceeding the speed limit in the pit lane. Miller admitted that he didn’t think the notification was correct.

All of this happened after the Australian got trapped at Turn 11 at the Blue Esses and strayed off the track just before hitting the pit lane for his wet bike.

Miller was able to minimize the time lost for race director Fabio Quartararo on laps nine and ten as he served his penalties before taking the lead on lap 12.

“It was a long race, that’s for sure,” said Miller after his second win in 2021.

“I thought we were fine, it was pretty dry. But as soon as Maverick [Vinales] it started to drizzle a little in front of me.

“I was just attacked by these Monster Energy Yamahas. We both [Quartararo and I] came closer at turn 8 and then on the back straight it was like a wall.

“We both basically hit a rain wall and his bike was all over the first chicane and then I went into the second. I just tried to stop the thing and lock both tires and immediately aimed at the gravel.

“I didn’t really believe the double penalty for long rounds after that. I thought, what did I do wrong?”

“But the old French speed traps get me all the time.

“I had to kick them out, it was a bit dodgy because I hadn’t even watched the long round penalty all weekend.

“I went in there and saw that the asphalt looked like the old stuff, thought it might be a bit slippery.

“But the second was a bit faster, I didn’t lose too much to him and I managed to recover for him [Quartararo]. ”

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When the track dried out in the closing stages, Miller gave his garage a sign to prepare his dry bike, but ultimately decided against the switch because the conditions were “a bit of a touch and go” in relation to the time he lost again .

“I really thought about it, but I didn’t know the gaps after that [the first swap] and I was a little borderline, ”he explained.

“Seven more laps… it would have cost me at least 40 seconds to drive through the pit lane because it’s so long here.

“The first sector was a bit of a touch and go, I’m glad I didn’t, but I thought about it a bit.”