For the second Grand Prix in a row, Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Brad Binder was the lead qualifier as the South African made the cut from Q1 to Q2 and will line-up in 12th place for the 23-lap race at MotorLand Aragon on Sunday.
The technical layout of MotorLand Aragon gave 2021 MotoGP its latest challenge and remained fresh in the riders’ minds for feeling and set-up after the double-header that took place at the eastern Spanish venue last autumn. The championship negotiated the circuit for only one appointment and the thirteenth round of eighteen on the current calendar but enjoyed warm and bright conditions for the crucial Free Practice sessions on Saturday and the flurry of fast laps in both Q1 and Q2.
The quickest KTM RC16 rider on the day and among a very tight contest with 11 names split by just 1.1 seconds was Brad Binder. The Styrian Grand Prix winner grabbed 2nd place in Q1 and transferred into Q2 for the second meeting in succession. Brad was handicapped by having used the best options from his tire allocation and could not push to the maximum in the short decider for the first three rows of the grid.
The MotoGP lights will go out on Sunday at 14.00 CET.
Brad Binder: “I’m happy we made it through to Q2 but unfortunately we didn’t have the tires to make the most of it. I tried my best to make a lap-time from a used one from Q1 but just didn’t have the grip. I struggled to do anything In Q2. Overall, we can be happy with the step we have made today. Now we’ll give our all tomorrow.”
The Board of Directors met for its third meeting of the year at the FIM HQ in Mies, Switzerland, and via videoconference on 8 and 9 September 2021
On this occasion, the Board addressed many topics, in particular the following: COVID-19 pandemic: Thanks to the strong commitment of the FIM Family and stakeholders, all World Championships/Cups and Prizes could be held with only minor cancellations or changes in spite of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the 2021 sporting and non-sporting calendars .
Sport: All disciplines were discussed with a focus on the Supercross World Championship for which a tender for the promotion of this championship will soon be launched for the upcoming years. The status of the MiniGP World Series was addressed as well as the E-bikes, E-Motorcycles and E-Xplorer. Discussions related to the level of sound emissions took place. The Board decided to fix the new sound limit to 109dB/A with a margin of tolerance of +1dB/A (sound measuring method) for factory off-road motorcycles for 2023 and for production series off-road motorcycles for 2024. The e-sport Working Group presented its report to the Board.
Finance: The Board approved a draft 2022 budget as well as changes in calendar and licence fees which will be presented to the General Assembly for approval. The 2022 direct payments were also agreed.
Insurances: The status of the 2022-2024 international riders’ insurance programme was presented and the volunteers’ insurance project was introduced to the Board.
Public Affairs: The Board was informed of the status of the revision of the EU Motor Insurance Directive (Vnuk case). The Motorsport shall be the only sector specifically exempted from the scope of the directive. National Federations are encouraged to lobby at national level to ensure a proper integration of the exemption in the respective national legislations. After a tender process, FIPRA was retained as the new FIM’s EU public affairs consultant as of 2022. Sustainability: The sustainability strategy developed by the International Sustainably Commission, together with external experts was presented to the Board. Discussions about alternatives energies such as electricity, eco-fuel or green-hydrogen were held.
Platforms and digitalisation: The platform listing the riders serving a period of ineligibility is ready to be implemented. It will centralise all information related to ineligibility of riders. The information on the platform will be provided by the riders’ FMNs. This tool will allow all FMNs to check the status of a rider before issuing a licence. The medical data platform (accidentology and riders’ status), aiming to provide a unique reference point for the FIM Medical Director and all FIM Chief Medical Officers, is currently being developed. This platform will allow to track the health status of the riders and to monitor the frequency and type of accident and related medical consequences in each case. The Working Group on digitalisation presented its first report to the Board. Its initial tasks included an assessment of the current state of play regarding digitalisation within the FIM and among the FMNs.
Education and training: Webinars with the participation of the FMNs were maintained with a satisfactory attendance rate. A training aimed at FMN Secretaries General on “Resilience – how managers can manage during a crisis?” will be organised mid-October by FIM Europe with the cooperation of the FIM in Rome (Italy).
Marketing and Digital: An in-depth analysis of the marketing and digital contents of the FIM International Six Days’ Enduro was presented to the Board. The coverage on various platforms such as the website, social media, among others, was also addressed for this event for which the FIM is acting as promoter.
Communication: The FIM Hospitality will be present on 10 events on various disciplines during the 2021 season. It is the FIM official venue to host media, partners, stakeholders, meetings, officials at major racing events.
General Assembly and FIM Awards: The Board decided to hold the 2021 General Assembly and 2020-2021 FIM Awards in Monaco. Mandate was given to the Executive Board to decide on the 2022 General Assembly and 2022 FIM Awards venue. The 2022 Commissions Conference will take place in February in Divonne les Bains (France).
Amendments to Codes and Regulations: The Board approved amendments to the Statues and By Laws as well as the Sporting Code that will be submitted to the General Assembly for consideration. Several amendments to the Financial Regulations and Medical Code were also approved by the Board.
Awards & Recognition: The Board awarded the following honorary memberships and title of Member of Honour, subject to the approval of the General Assembly:
Andrzej Witkowski (PZM), Honorary Vice President
Wojcieh Grodzki (PZM), Honorary CCP Member (posthumously)
Johan Pieter Ribbink (KNMV), Honorary CMS Member (posthumously)
Charly Demathieu (FMB), Member of Honour
Commissions: The following appointment was approved by the Board:
CTI – Expert, Giuseppe Esposito Corcione
In addition, the CONU Presidents, the Board Committees, the Working Groups and the departments of the Administration presented progress reports on their respective projects.
Zoom screen from top left: Jan STOVICEK (Board Member); Robert DINGMAN (FIM North America President); Stephan CARAPIET (FIM Asia President); Peter DOYLE (FIM Oceania President); Abdulrahmann AL MANNAI (Board Member).
Brother Leader Tread KTM are preparing to tap into new gears as the penultimate round of the National Cross Country Championship approaches.
Taking centre stage this weekend is Bradley Cox, who will not only attempt to extend his lead in the race for the OR2 Championship, but also for the Overall National Cross Country title.
The rider has never raced at the Delmas venue before but is undaunted by the unfamiliar terrain. Having snatched a class victory in the last round, Cox describes feeling as confident as ever on his KTM 350 XC-F, “I really enjoy it when races take place so close to each other. I pulled off my plan to win in the last round recently and while that feeling is still fresh, I get to carry the momentum over into the next round. Everything is dialled in and I can’t wait to get out there on my KTM 350 XC-F,”
Also representing the orange squad this weekend is Charan Moore. With a dream to complete the infamous Dakar Rally next year, the rider is currently competing in the Kalahari Rally. Moore will line-up on Saturday having spent more time in the saddle than ever, something that will certainly hold him in good stead as he looks to narrow the gap on the frontrunners in the OR1 Class.
“After two back-to-back weekends of racing, I spent some time getting back to the drawing board. I felt like towards the end of each race I found a really good groove, which is what I ultimately want to feel from the start of the race. I know what I needed to build on for Delmas to be ‘race ready’ and I’m keen to see how that will pay off.”
After an unfortunate turn of events, Brother Leader Tread KTM’s Jarryd Coetzee has withdrawn from the Delmas event due to an injury. After crashing during training, the rider will spend the next few weeks recovering from a successful operation he underwent this week.
As his team prepare to battle it out for Cross Country glory, KTM South Africa’s Marketing Manager Louwrens Mahoney commented: “The national event will be combined with a GXCC Club race – so this is going to be a tough day for the riders! They have six laps of a 48km loop to get through, and with 300+ riders in the mix the track is going to get really rough and demanding. Our riders have done the necessary changes and set up to adapt to this type of racing, so we are ready for a great day! We wish Jarryd Coetzee a speedy recovery and look forward to having back on the start line.”
Published by: Louwrens Mahoney – KTM Motorcycles SA
The curtains of the National Cross Country Championship have started drawing to a close with the penultimate round of the series taking place in Delmas, Mpumalanga, this weekend. With two national titles within their grasp, Rockstar Energy Husqvarna are preparing to fight tooth and nail for every last championship point that remains.
Leading rider Brett Swanepoel will be out for redemption this weekend. The rider faced his greatest test of the season when he ran out of petrol in the previous round. With the help of a fellow rider, Swanepoel dug deep to get to the finish line and salvage his hope of defending the prestigious OR1 Championship.
Having chosen his weapon of choice to finish the 2021 season strong, Swanepoel will return to his trusty Husqvarna FX 450 this weekend. “Without trying all our options, which fortunately we have with our line-up of Husqvarna models, we will not learn and progress – so with that being said, the race for this OR1 championship is far from over! After the last round, Brett has decided to stick to the FX 450 as his weapon of choice for the rest of the season.”
“I just finished up the last bit of testing before the weekend and I’m feeling as confident as ever on the FX 450. Let’s go!” said an excited Swanepoel.
Joining him in the battle for Cross Country glory is Rockstar Energy Husqvarna teammate Davin Cocker. The youngster put on an eye-catching performance in the last round when he stormed to victory in the OR3 Class and third place overall.
Having stepped onto the overall podium for the first time in his career, Cocker will undoubtedly line-up with a fresh sense of confidence this weekend. Not only did the rider prove that he has what it takes to race against the frontrunners in this sport, but sent a strong message that his Husqvarna FC 250 is a force to be reckoned with.
Cocker has been dealt his fair share of blows this season and has been relentless in his effort to claw his way back up the leader board. His recent victory has put him back into contention for the OR3 Championship and only a few points separate him from the top step.
While the race for the national title will come right down to the wire, the rider remains undaunted as he prepares to face on the familiar Delmas terrain: “I like this terrain a lot and feel really comfortable on it. I feel so determined knowing I’m in second place by just a few points. I know this race is going to present a big battle for the championship lead, but I’m ready for whatever this weekend throws at me. My FC 250 is feeling great – from handling to power and speed. I couldn’t be happier with my setup, and I can’t wait to get out there!” said Cocker.