Red Bull KTM Factory Racing gave their home fans a memorable day at a sun-splashed CryptoDATA Motorrad Grand Prix von Österreich as Brad Binder took his KTM RC16 to runner-up status at a stacked Red Bull Ring. Jack Miller classified 15th as 2023 MotoGP arrived at the halfway point of the season and KTM toasted their 100th win in Moto3™.
Almost 94,000 fans crowded the stands on raceday in Austria as round ten of MotoGP took place around the tight and demanding Red Bull Ring.
Brad Binder follows up his 2nd place in the Saturday Sprint with a repeat in the Grand Prix ranking and his third podium appearance this season. The South African is 4th in the championship.
Miller, again, shows he is a start ‘king’ of MotoGP and challenges for the top three with improved competitiveness but encounters traction issues and takes the final GP point.
Deniz Öncü steals a thrilling show in Moto3 as KTM go 1-2 to reach a milestone while Pedro Acosta runs to 2nd place in Moto2 after launching from his third Pole Position of the year.
Q2 entry, the first two rows of the start grid, a Sprint podium and faster lap-times compared to 2022: the hype and hopes built up around Red Bull KTM Factory Racing ahead of the 28-lap MotoGP race on Sunday afternoon, and with a bumper attendance basking in summery conditions for the latest episode of the championship.
As is now the custom, both Brad Binder and Jack Miller surged into the leading positions from the start. Miller fought for a top-five slot but started to suffer with rear traction and drifted back into the clutches of his pursuers. Binder rallied hard behind leader Francesco Bagnaia and kept close to the Italian for almost half the race. When the South African also started to lose rear grip he had to concede seconds but rode securely to bank his second Prosecco spray of the weekend, third of the season, equal his PB of 2023 to-date and pulled to within 23 points of the top three in the championship standings. Jack made the line in 15th. Red Bull KTM are ranked 4th in the Teams table and the company is the 2nd best manufacturer.
MotoGP’s next appointment will swing the series around the popular Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya for the second visit to the Spanish mainland this year. The race will be followed hard the following week by the San Marino Grand Prix.
Brad Binder, 2nd: “I knew from yesterday that we were looking for drive grip but I did everything I could; protect where I could and push where I could on the brakes. I tried to keep him [Francesco Bagnaia] honest in the first half of the race but there was a moment where the rear grip just said ‘goodbye…’ and I knew I had to be clever and just bring the bike home. The team made another huge step from yesterday to today and I could brake so much later and so much harder. We still have a bit of work to do but I cannot thank them enough. It is awesome to be on the podium twice here in Austria and at their home Grand Prix.”
Jack Miller, 15th: “I started the race well and tried not to kill the tire in the first laps. I wanted to build up the temperature as smoothly as possible. It wasn’t to be. I noticed that I didn’t have the drive grip that I needed, so then I was just trying to manage the best I could with riding style and everything like that. I think the biggest thing for us is taking a step back, going back to our old setting and maybe finding a little bit of a different direction to work for myself.”
Francesco Guidotti, Red Bull KTM Team Manager: “Another good result for Brad and a second podium here. At the moment we are not able to catch the world champion who is in his best form but Brad fought like a lion, as usual. Second place was hard-won because the conditions were tough but he managed the race so well. Another brick in building our future. We are very confident after the last few grands prix. With Jack we suffered again in the second half of the race and we need to understand what is happening and how we can help him because he cannot ride like he wants. He can be better and we have to give him the support for that potential. We’ll enjoy our podium today but we’ll look towards round eleven and the next GPs for more.”
Results MotoGP CryptoDATA Motorrad Grand Prix von Österreich
1. Francesco Bagnaia (ITA) Ducati 42:23.315
2. Brad Binder (RSA) Red Bull KTM Factory Racing +5.191
3. Marco Bezzecchi (ITA) Ducati +7.708
15. Jack Miller (AUS) Red Bull KTM Factory Racing +25.475
World Championship standings MotoGP
1. Francesco Bagnaia (ITA) Ducati, 251 points
2. Jorge Martin (ESP) Ducati 189
3. Marco Bezzecchi (ITA) Ducati, 183
4. Brad Binder (RSA) Red Bull KTM Factory Racing, 160
8. Jack Miller (AUS) Red Bull KTM Factory Racing, 96