Brad Binder KTM 2021 MotoGP COTA race (1)

The first of the four final outings in the 2021 MotoGP championship took the series to the long and demanding Circuit of the Americas, and Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Brad Binder defied the intense heat to finish 9th on the KTM RC16.

  • Binder top-ranked at the Red Bull Grand Prix of the Americas
  • The South African is 6th in the world championship and 10 points from the top five
  • Oliveira fights from 18th on the grid to 11th & highest finish in the last five rounds

As well as a grid-full of rivals, the Red Bull KTM Factory Racing and Tech3 KTM Factory Racing teams had to grapple with the lengthy (5.5km), 20 corners and surprisingly rough COTA layout for 20 draining laps in hot and humid conditions.

Brad Binder KTM 2021 MotoGP COTA race (1)


 Brad Binder roared away from 11th place on the start grid and enjoyed an intense fight with world champion Joan Mir for most of the distance. The 26-year-old just dropped out from the tussle for 6th in the final stages.

After a complicated qualification process, Teammate Miguel Oliveira embarked on a busy race to regain ground and positions from the 18th. The Portuguese diligently applied himself to the task and was rewarded with 11th, his highest classification of the last six rounds. 

Tech3 KTM Factory Racing’s Iker Lecuona was two seconds away from Valentino Rossi and the chance to grab the last point in the 15th, while Danilo Petrucci ended a problematic weekend searching for grip and speed with 18th.

Danilo Petrucci KTM 2021 MotoGP COTA race

 MotoGP journeys back to Europe for the final trio of Grand Prix events in San Marino, Portugal and Spain. The series breaks for two weeks before reconvening at the Misano World Circuit on October 23rd and 24th for the Gran Premio Nolan del Made in Italy e dell Emilia-Romagna.


Brad Binder“Today, going into the race, I felt that we hadn’t done many quality laps this weekend. I didn’t have the best rhythm, and I was missing a bit of speed, but in the end, I gave my best, and the team did a fantastic job to give me the best available package for the race. We are nowhere near where we need to be – and where we want to be – but it was P9 Today. There was not much more I could have done. We’ll keep working and try again in Misano.”

Miguel Oliveira“As we expected, it was a hard race and challenging to make many positions. We recovered some places. We scored points, and we raced well.

We are looking forward to Misano, where we just need to understand how to qualify better and then fight for better positions in the race. I’m happier now that we have finished the race here and achieved something. Looking to the future, this was an important step.”

Iker Lecuona KTM 2021 MotoGP COTA race

Iker Lecuona“It was very ough in general. I didn’t feel good with the bike in these track conditions, so I struggled a lot. I won the first laps far back on the front two or three times in the first corners.

Then I tried to recover, but I used a lot of rear tyres, so I didn’t have any grip anymore. 

In the last ten laps, I tried to recover the gap to Rossi, and I made up almost three seconds, but then he improved a lot. It was hard, and finally, we didn’t get any points in P16. But we gathered experience. We learned a lot during this weekend, and I think now I have two weeks to recover and be fit for Misano two.”

Miguel Oliveira KTM 2021 MotoGP COTA race (1)

More quotes

Danilo Petrucci“It was a difficult race. I tried to stay with the others at the beginning, but we faced the same issues all weekend long. It feels like I can’t use the tyre properly, and my bike doesn’t turn as I want it. 

I lost energy in braking to try to stick with the rest but then also in the corners I was slower and in trying to be faster I risked crashing many times. It was tough. We tried, and we will try again in Misano.”

 Mike Leitner, Red Bull KTM Race Manager: “We knew it would be a tough one. COTA is still a track we have not raced at that much. Brad had a strong one and suffered from a bit of vibration from the bike and tires around seven laps from the end, and that cost him the chance to fight in that group going for 6th position. 

We are happy with the performance, but we all cannot be satisfied with a 9th. Miguel also improved, but we wanted both riders in the top ten, and we have to work harder to get them in there.”

 Results MotoGP Red Bull Grand Prix of the Americas2021

  • 1. Marc Marquez (ESP), Honda 41:41.435
  • 2. Fabio Quartararo (FRA) Yamaha +4.679
  • 3. Francesco Bagnaia (ITA) Ducati +8.547
  • 4. Alex Rins (ESP), Suzuki +11.098
  • 5. Jorge Martin (ESP) Ducati +11.752
  • 9. Brad Binder (RSA), Red Bull KTM Factory Racing +15.832
  • 11. Miguel Oliveira (POR), Red Bull KTM Factory Racing +23.055
  • 16. Iker Lecuona (ESP), Tech3 KTM Factory Racing +30.989
  • 18. Danilo Petrucci (ITA), Tech3 KTM Factory Racing +42.239

via KTM


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