Caterpillar is setting a lightning-fast pace via its partnership with Aussie MotoGP rider Jack Miller, with Miller having agreed to a sponsorship arrangement under which he will represent the Cat® brand on a global stage while racing with the Ducati Team during the 2021 MotoGP World Championship.
Miller will be riding with the Cat® logo placed on his helmet visor throughout the 2021 MotoGP season, which kicked off earlier in the year in Qatar, and which features an international schedule spanning tracks in a number of continents, including the Phillip Island circuit in Victoria, slated for October.
Hailing from Townsville in north-eastern Queensland, Miller is a passionate Caterpillar customer, and has recently bought a new Cat D3 small dozer (check out the specs below) from Queensland and Northern Territory Cat dealer Hastings Deering.
Billed as the “fastest Cat owner on the planet”, Miller made his MotoGP debut in 2015, and will be looking to build on his previous season’s form this year, having secured four podium finishes throughout 2020 in what was his best season to date.
“This is the start of a great relationship,” Miller said of the sponsorship deal. “I’m stoked to be able to represent the Cat brand both during racing and in my downtime.
“I’ve been around Cat machinery all my life growing up in Townsville, and recently took the plunge to buy my own Next Generation D3 tractor from Hastings Deering, which I will be putting through its paces whenever I can.”
Caterpillar Marketing Manager for Australia Cameron Balzat highlighted the two-fold nature of the partnership with Miller, which he noted provides the opportunity to connect with a wide, international audience.
“The sponsorship commitment to Jack as both Cat machinery owner and top-line MotoGP rider is a great fit for Caterpillar,” he commented. “This is a unique way for the Cat brand to connect with MotoGP enthusiasts, the motorsports community, as well as Cat owners and operators throughout the world.”
Cat® D3 small dozer: Performance capabilities supported by technology features
Caterpillar describes its Next Gen small dozers as being “designed to optimise speed, transportability, manoeuvrability, versatility and finish grade accuracy”, with the Cat D3 dozer, weighing in at 9,362kg (operating weight), “nimble and responsive” and sporting the “power for dozing and ﬁnesse for grading”.
Complementing the D3’s performance capabilities, a range of technology features are designed to make operation easier, helping owners to get the most out of their machine, while a load sensing system automatically optimises ground speed based on load, boosting productivity and fuel efficiency.
The D3 runs a 77.6 kW Cat C3.6 engine, and is equipped with a fully hydrostatic transmission, with Caterpillar advising that while it offers the same net power ratings as the previous series counterpart model, it delivers up to 10 per cent improved fuel economy (with Eco mode also improving fuel economy by automatically reducing engine speed when not required).
Meanwhile, the D3’s cab is designed to deliver when it comes to space and comfort, with it featuring an optional heated and ventilated seat, in addition to heated joystick controls, while the seat height and armrests can be adjusted according to the operator’s preference.
In addition to this, the D3 features:
• Visibility – a new sloped hood is designed to provide for better visibility in front of the blade and the overall job site
• Grade technology – scalable 2D and 3D Cat Grade encompasses technologies like Slope Assist, Stable Blade and Slope Indicate, designed to deliver easier and more efficient operations
• Display – an optional 10-inch touchscreen colour display provides access to many of the D3’s standard and optional technology features, including a view of machine settings, the rearview camera and the Slope Assist/Slope Indicate screens, with a large reversing camera also delivering operators better visibility of job sites
• Undercarriage – the D3 is available with either a sealed and lubricated track (SALT) or abrasion undercarriage, with a one-piece mainframe/track roller frame design and large, double reduction planetary final drive allowing it to push heavy loads
When it comes to maintenance, Caterpillar advises that the D3’s large, hinged door, which has been moved to the righthand side of the machine, provides easy engine service access to all regular engine maintenance points.