Round four of 2023 MotoGP saw the Red Bull KTM Factory Racing team shift their Grand Prix project into another gear. Brad Binder and teammate Jack Miller finished 2nd and 3rd on Sunday for another podium ‘brace’ and after claiming a second Sprint victory of the season on Saturday.
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 Brad 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. Brad 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.
Brad 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. 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.”