There are many who think Brad Binder is the most underrated rider in the MotoGP, and they’re probably not wrong. In terms of victories, Oliveira did better than he did, but the South African rider is consistent, with a speed that shouldn’t be taken lightly, while his 6th place in 2022 – with a KTM that also suffered several problems – shouldn’t go unnoticed. If the RC16 manages to progress in what it’s lacking, we’ll probably have to get used to seeing Brad in positions that matter, and he’s the first to be convinced of this.
“The last two years have been tough. We worked hard, even it it wasn’t easy,” he emphasized. “Despite everything, I finished sixth in both seasons, so why couldn’t I be in the top three? I think I can do it.”
What do you think about Miller’s arrival?
“It’s a great thing to have Jack on board, because he knows the Ducati well. At the moment, it’s the bike to beat, so it’ll offer us a great opportunity to understand what direction we need to take. Something has already happened, and the best is yet to come. The most important thing is that Jack has confirmed what areas we need to work in, and it was nice to find out that he thinks like me.”
Not only did a rider come from Ducati, but also technicians and managers. How has the way you work changed?
“There are many new faces, and there have been changes. In the past, we’d sometimes take shots in the dark, while now we have innovations that solve a specific problem. It may seem like development is slower, but every new piece is always a step forward. This gives more stability and is definitely a positive thing.”
Where does the RC16 have problems?
“Braking, and it’s not easy to improve. The goal is to progress when braking hard, so as to make the bike go quickly, and then take advantage of all the horsepower in acceleration.”
You have a busy season ahead of you with 42 races.
“I’m excited about the introduction of the sprint race. I’ve never been a big fan of the FP4,” he said laughing. “I know it’s important for choosing the tires, but I prefer racing.”
KTM’s top brass wants the title as soon as possible.
“I’ve never talked about goals with them, but we clearly all want to win. For me, the most important thing will be to improve compared to last season.”
They say you’re a Sunday rider because you give it your all in the race.
“I hope to become a Saturday rider soon too,” he laughed. “We’ve often struggled in qualifying, but I know we’ll improve on the fast lap when we find a way to make the most of the new tires, and the progress in braking is part of this process. We’re, therefore, working in the right direction. I’m optimistic for this season. We’re no longer in the situation of having to recuperate three seconds per lap. Two or three tenths would be enough. We’re close.”