Miller and Rabat fired up for Mugello
Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS MotoGP riders, Jack Miller and Tito Rabat, head to this weekend's Italian Grand Prix at the iconic Mugello circuit determined to build on a positive performance last time out in France.
Despite a high-speed crash in free practice, which he was lucky to walk away from uninjured, Miller equalled his best result of the season with eighth place in the French Grand Prix, which was enough to see him return to the top ten in the championship standings.
The 22-year-old Australian opted to sit out a two-day MotoGP test in Barcelona immediately after Le Mans to allow his right hand and right knee, both of which were swollen following his FP4 crash, time to heal. Having completed an intensive program of physiotherapy during the past week Miller is looking forward to a return to action this weekend in Italy where, once again, a top ten finish is his goal.
The ever changing and unpredictable weather in Le Mans caused problems for Rabat in practice and qualifying ahead of the French Grand Prix, but the former Moto2 World Champion showed his mettle by bouncing back to claim 11th place in the race, his best result of the season so far.
Rabat heads to Italy buoyed by his Le Mans result and by a successful two-day test in Barcelona the following week. The Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS rider continues to improve his feeling with the 2017 Honda RC213V and is confident that he can further reduce the gap to the frontrunners this weekend in Mugello, a track at which he was twice a winner in the intermediate category.
“As soon as I got home from Le Mans I had a scan on the hand and the knee just to make sure there was nothing broken and since then I've been working with the physiotherapist to reduce the swelling in both. I've been doing a lot of cycling this week, but I also managed to get out on the supermotard and had no problems with the hand or the knee, so it's looking good for the weekend ahead. Mugello is one of those special circuits on the calendar and like a lot of other riders I really enjoy racing there. With the long straights it's a bit of a horsepower track, but it's also one that demands a lot of confidence in the front, and we've made big steps in this area since the start of the season. This means we should be able to make up in the corners and in the fast changes of direction what we lose down the straights, so I'm confident another top ten finish is a realistic goal for us this weekend.”
“Mugello promises be a interesting weekend for me after the result in Le Mans and the two days of testing in Barcelona. We know where we need to improve; in the race our results are steadily getting better, but it is in practice and qualifying where we need to focus our attention now, especially when conditions are changeable as they were in Le Mans. At the moment it's taking me too long to adapt to mixed conditions and find my rhythm and this is something we need to improve. Mugello is a special circuit, very fast, very technical and very demanding of both bikes and riders. Physically it's tough, but you never really feel tired because the track is just so much fun to race on. It's one of my favourite circuits and one where I've had some success in the past, so this weekend can't come soon enough for me.”