Binder: “Just a matter of time” before “frustrated” KTM breaks through in MotoGP

Brad Binder believes it is “just a matter of time” before a “frustrated” KTM breaks through to being a consistent podium challenger in MotoGP.

Binder: “Just a matter of time” before “frustrated” KTM breaks through in MotoGP

The Austrian manufacturer has won a race at least once a season since 2020, but consistency has eluded the marque in that time.

While Miguel Oliveira won twice in 2022, he did so in wet conditions, and was only 10th in the standings, while all of KTM’s dry podiums were courtesy of Binder with rostrums in Qatar, Japan and Valencia.

Having been forced into making 96 overtakes across the 20-race season due to underwhelming qualifying results, Binder has become known as a Sunday specialist having managed 17 top 10 results despite starting outside of the top 10, 14 times.

Given the resources available to KTM, its inability to be a consistent podium threat in 2022 goes against the changing of the order in MotoGP, where European manufacturers have emerged as the leading marques – with Ducati winning the championship and Aprilia third in the constructors’’ standings ahead of KTM.

Brad Binder, Red Bull KTM Factory Racing

Brad Binder, Red Bull KTM Factory Racing

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

Binder – who believes the main issue with the RC16 is its lack of rear contact and drive grip, which hurts the bike’s turning – is confident KTM is close to making a breakthrough.

“I like to think it’s just a matter of time,” Binder told Autosport when asked what he felt KTM was missing to join its European rivals in leading MotoGP.

“Honestly, KTM has the resources, they have everything we need. Clearly, they’re as frustrated as all of us when we are not getting the results on Sundays.

“It’s clear what we need to improve, we know what we need to work on for next season.

“The guys have really pinpointed what we need to improve on and what direction we need to work in, whereas in the past we would be just throwing parts at the bike all the time and hoping something would work.

“Now, everything we try is a lot more pinpointed to an issue and we really see if it’s working or if it’s not.

“I think the way we have been working this season has really steered us in a direction that we can now say ‘ok, this is what we need to do to start to improve’.”

Binder added that KTM “isn’t scared” of trying new things and looking outside of its own borders to try and improve its project.

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Analysing his own season, in which he finished sixth in the standings for a second year in a row through his consistency on Sundays, Binder believes he is much better than his championship result suggests.

“I feel like I’m ready to do good things,” he said.

“I feel like I found the point where I can finish races and I know I can be strong in races. I understand the class, the tyres more than I did last year for instance.

“Together with KTM we’re looking for that final step to try to fight for something better, because sixth is not terrible but it’s not where we want to be. I believe we are [better than sixth].”

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