Round 4 of the 2023 MotoGP season in Spain saw the Red Bull KTM Factory Racing team shift their Grand Prix project into another gear. Brad Binder and Jack Miller finished 2nd and 3rd on Sunday for another podium ‘brace’ and after claiming a second Sprint victory of the season on Saturday.
Brad Binder leads 18 of 24 laps and finishes 0.2 away from his first Grand Prix win of the season. The South African posts his first GP podium result and is now 3rd in the championship
Jack Miller toasts his first top three in just his fourth GP outing for Red Bull KTM in 3rd place. The Austrian ‘formation-flew’ with his teammate in the first half of the race. Jack is 4th in the standings
MotoGP Legend Dani Pedrosa follows up his 6th in qualifying and 6th in the Sprint with 7th on Sunday, just six seconds from the winner for a memorable wildcard by the 37-year-old test rider
Ivan Ortola wins again with his KTM RC4 in Moto3™ and Pedro Acosta is runner-up in Moto2.
Cooler temperatures and cloudier skies greeted the hoards of fans that poured into the Circuit de Jerez – Angel Nieto for the Gran Premio MotoGP™ Guru by Gryfyn de España. After a stellar Saturday, the Red Bull KTM trio lined-up for the full 25-lap Grand Prix race distance hopeful of more high competitiveness and podium contention. Starting from the same qualifying positions of 2nd (Miller), 4th (Binder) and 6th (Pedrosa) the KTM RC16s were prominently placed into the first corner. The race was forced into a restart after a collision in Turn 2 but the RC16s were again 1-2 from the ‘off’ and for the 24-lap chase.
Both riders swapped positions and track space but Binder was the main pace setter as Miller had his hands full with Francesco Bagnaia and Jorge Martin. Bagnaia was in strong form and took the lead with four laps to go. Binder attacked hard and set his fastest lap on the final circulation. The margin was a narrow 0.2 of a second at the flag. Miller fended off Martin to come home in 3rd.
Binder has surged up to 3rd in the world championship standings, with his 12 point haul from Saturday – the second of the year so far – helping towards the total. Miller is 4th and just 13 points behind. KTM are 2nd in the Constructors table and Red Bull KTM Factory Racing hold the same slot in the Teams’ competition.
The Gran Premio MotoGP™ Guru by Gryfyn de España will be bookended by the first one-day official test of the season. The team will be busy again on Monday at Jerez with a view towards potential upgrades and more homologation ahead of the SHARK Grand Prix de France at Le Mans on May 13th-14th.
Brad Binder, 2nd: “Today was fantastic. So happy to get a solid podium and to be out front leading the race. I kept seeing that I had a little gap, so I thought I had done the job and had to look after my rear tire…but I think I cooked it a bit with three-four laps to go. It is what it is, but I managed my best lap of the race right at the end trying to get Pecco: hats off to him. Thanks to my team and to everyone for their support. We’ll try again next week.”
Jack Miller, 3rd: “I had to work for that one today! I had a great start and, like most of the boys, I was struggling with the right side of the tire by mid-race. I don’t quite know how but we started putting in some really fast laps at the end and I just couldn’t quite close up to two in front. Brad rode awesome, so did Pecco, there was some fun racing going on and I’m stoked to be a part of it and put Red Bull KTM up here again. It’s an amazing feeling and I hope we are here to stay.”
Dani Pedrosa, 7th:“I can keep two things from this weekend. One is the technical side and all the things I can tell the test team and we can keep in mind for the next stage our of work. There is also the amazing results by the guys! The second thing is how the people were with me: it was unbelievable, and I was overwhelmed! I just tried to give my best and I hope the fans liked it. I think we are getting stronger as a project and the bike is improving step-by-step.”
Francesco Guidotti, Red Bull KTM Team Manager: “What a weekend. We started the Grand Prix in the good way with Dani and then the Quali went perfect, we won the Sprint race and today was amazing. We did something special: both riders fighting for victory, leading most of the way and taking two spots on the podium. Personally, I want to thank every single person involved in this project. We are all super-committed but we are also under pressure because there is such a short time to show our potential each GP. Time goes so fast so I’m glad we are starting to show something important. We had red flags and even rain at one stage so it was an intense weekend here. The technicians, designers, mechanics, riders, the test team; thanks everyone for these incredible results. We are looking forward and we are confident.”
Results MotoGP Gran Premio MotoGP™ Guru by Gryfyn de España
1. Francesco Bagnaia (ITA) Ducati 39:29.085
2. Brad Binder (RSA) Red Bull KTM Factory Racing +0.221
3. Jack Miller (AUS) Red Bull KTM Factory Racing +1.119
World championship standings MotoGP
1. Francesco Bagnaia (ITA) Ducati, 87 points
2. Marco Bezzecchi (ITA) Ducati, 65
3. Brad Binder (RSA) Red Bull KTM Factory Racing, 62
4. Jack Miller (AUS) Red Bull KTM Factory Racing, 49