Red Bull KTM Factory Racing riders, Brad Binder and their hopes for 2021!
Miguel Oliveira, the 26-year-old racing driver from Almada, took his first two MotoGP victories at the Styrian GP and at the home GP of Portugal last season, which convinced the team bosses that he is the man who is the Spaniard Pol Espargaró is supposed to replace Binder – who also took his first victory at the Czech GP.
With everyone hoping for a longer season than the 14 races that took place in the 2020 COVID-19 hit, the duo have the tools to deal with reigning champion Joan Mir, his Suzuki teammate Álex Rins, the six-time Repsol Honda champion Marc Márquez, Jack Miller from Ducati and a strong quartet of Yamaha riders to include in Franco Morbidelli, Maverick Viñales, Fabio Quartararo and seven-time champion Valentino Rossi.
Here’s what the drivers and team bosses had to say ahead of the 2021 season opener:
Number: # 33
Country: South Africa
“In general, 2020 was a season in which, in my opinion, we achieved a lot. A few good results, and of course with the first win – or the first KTM win – as a highlight. But there were also many days when we had the potential a lot more to achieve. Sure there is a little less room to improve now, but I think over the course of the last season, even if we had a little dip in the middle, things got better and better. I have a feeling that I have not only improved in terms of results, but also in the way I approach the weekends. Right now I feel like we have a very strong package. We are on a good path and I am I’m super excited to get back on my bike this year. ”
Number: # 88
“To become world champion, of course, many details have to fit together at the same time, and that depends on how the season is going and what happens. Sometimes 4th place is a very good result and sometimes 2nd place might not meet our expectations, but you do has to work through this process and right now, as a starting point, I’m thinking pretty hard about setting a bar of results that we can consider successful. Being better than 2020 is definitely a good start. It’s pretty relaxing knowing that the bike is capable of winning, but at the same time you can’t take anything for granted. When it comes to repeating the success it gets harder so I don’t see it as the main task. I think you have to do something every year Bring ‘up’ to keep a very good level in this championship, I feel like I can work on more details in a works team and can at least be more constant. I think these are the tools the factory team will give me. I am fully convinced of my work. ”
Race director Mike Leitner
“Increased pressure certainly brings more motivation for the racing team, because all KTM people who work in this racing business are used to pressure and know how to deal with it. That is the DNA of our sport – or for sport in general – and we take that as a positive thing. We are on schedule for 2021. We had ideas and had to find a good balance between what we can achieve now and the five days of testing in Doha before the start of the season. The re we have to homologate the engine specifications and the aerodynamics package. We have the things we want for 2021, but of course the people in the company are already working on things for the 2022 season. We have fulfilled the plan that we had for the winter tests, but what we can ultimately bring in the 2021 season will be after the five Days at the Doha test. Our two drivers will get everything they need to give their best in 2021. ”
KTM Motorsport Director Pit Beirer
“ The whole MotoGP journey so far has been a dream, but the project started with the dream of becoming a GP winner in this class. So it’s amazing to look back and see where we’ve got to. But I definitely don’t want to commit myself to that that we’re already title contenders. I think the pressure should still be on the other guys in the paddock, but we’re really, really happy that the dream of these GP wins has come true.
The y stand up the paper and we’re definitely hungry for more. We have a great team and everyone is going flat out. I think that’s the style of KTM and the whole company: having that new spirit with a new goal means that the whole company will stick together and we do it together. That brings extra energy. ”
KTM AG Member of the Board of Management (CMO) Hubert Trunkenpolz
“MotoGP is the best platform for global motorsport currently available. That is why we wanted to extend the previous successful collaboration for the next five years. Winning the first MotoGP race in Brno with Brad Binder last summer was one of the most emotional moments in my entire motorsport life, and of course for the company too. We delivered and that took a lot of pressure off us. I don’t know if it was a coincidence, but from then on our business went through the roof on a global scale. I think that the fans enjoyed MotoGP in 2020, but what we really missed were the fans on the tracks. I hope we get back to some normality this year. We’d love to win another race to really get to that to build on what we have achieved in 2020. ”
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