There are always undoubted advantages in being part of a 'big family' of motorsport in general. It probably happened with Ducati and Audi, with the Borgo Panigale manufacturer which has undoubtedly been able to draw on the wealth of know-how of the German giant in various fields and it has obviously always happened also in Honda, which has a very strong commitment with HRC both in world of two and four wheels.
Now it's KTM's turn in MotoGP, which despite not having a direct link with any automotive company will be able to take advantage of the partnership with Red Bull by drawing resources from the pharaonic Formula 1 program. The premier four-wheeled formula has already proved to be an excellent reservoir of resources for MotoGP with the additions requested by Massimo Rivola in Aprilia, which undoubtedly contributed to helping the RS-GP make a significant leap in performance thanks also to the different approach to aerodynamics, which is the hottest field at the moment.
The partnership was confirmed by Francesco Guidotti who, in an interview with our British colleagues of Crash.net, declared that he was soon awaiting news from the Red Bull Advanced Technology pool of technicians. All this was made possible by a reconfiguration of the budget of the F1 program following the FIA penalty on Red Bull, which had overstepped the budget set at 145 million dollars for 2021. The result was a reduction in the room for manoeuvre which fell to 140 million for 2022 and to 135 for the two-year period 2024/25.
This different budget allocation might have prompted Red Bull to cut some staff in its programme, but the choice was instead to assign the unusable engineers in the Formula 1 budget of 135 million to other bull-related sporting activities. One part will in fact be destined for the America's Cup project with the Oracle boat, while another part will be made available to the KTM MotoGP programme.
“It’s a partnership and maybe we are in the right place at the right moment,” specified Guidotti. “We have to improve a little bit the aerodynamic side of the bike, it’s one of the aspects that the motorcycle environment didn’t explore until a few years ago. So for sure we have margin to improve there and the new agreement with Red Bull Technologies can help us. We hope that for Sepang, we will have something to test.”
It is clear that the aerodynamics of motorbikes and cars follow completely different logics.
"It's not just about limiting wheelies, aerodynamics have an effect everywhere. Especially with the height device and the efficiency of aerodynamics as the height of the bike varies".
In short, KTM's quest to get closer to the leading MotoGP group continues, with the Austrian manufacturer ready to resort to this golden opportunity served on a silver platter in the hope of making the RC16 take another leap forward.