MUGELLO was a race in which Jack Miller believed a podium was possible.
Instead, he didn’t finish it until the second lap in the gravel on the outside of Turn 4.
Miller, dressed in a yellow and black Lamborghini livery for the Italian Grand Prix weekend, fell from ninth place in the Materassi corner when the front suspension of his Pramac Ducati hit rock bottom.
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“(It) was just what it was,” said a dejected Miller.
“I… didn’t have a bad start; I had a good jump but had some problems when we drove over the hill and lost a few positions.
“I fought my way through again, had (team-mate Danilo) Petrucci in front of me and was just in the race.
“Even with a full fuel charge, I could feel that I was touching the ground (of the forks) when braking in Turn 1.
“I tried to stay calm, but at the entrance to Turn 4 I hit the ground at the wrong moment and lost the front. I did my best to keep it up. “
Miller was one of five drivers who dropped out on the first two laps of the race, along with Dani Pedrosa and Takaaki Nakagami, Scott Redding and Thomas Lüthi.
The Australian’s fall ends a streak of eight consecutive top 10 finishes for Miller that went back to Phillip Island last year.
He told the track media that the bottoming issue was one they identified in pre-season testing, and they devised a chassis setup change to compensate for this but decided not to do it on her Applying the Mugello setup as Miller and the team did not feel it was necessary.
“It sucks, but those are the moments that make others better,” he said.
“It’s nothing new to me, I’ve had a lot of crash-outs. But we can make mistakes this year, let’s say because next year I want to fight for this title and that will mean a lot more.
“We learn, we take steps, we are on the right track. It’s just a minor setback. Not the end of the world. 13 laps left. We’ll still have a few chances, I’m sure of that. “