Red Bull KTM Factory Racing sought to send their MotoGP opposition into a spin through the ceaseless corners of the Sachsenring as Jack Miller and Brad Binder aimed for podium presence at the Motorrad Grand Prix Deutschland. Miller sealed 6thas Brad Binder came away from the seventh round of twenty empty-handed after a fall from 3rd position.
Each day of the German Grand Prix had been affected by rain showers and a 3.6km racetrack that moved from wet to dry conditions. Sunday, and the second fixture of three back-to-back races, produced warm, summer weather, and the German fans packed the stands and banking around the Sachsenring course.
Jack Miller and Brad Binder both made their customary strong starts from 3rd and 9th places on the grid respectively. The short Sachsenring layout meant a 30-lap distance and where tire preservation would be key to consistent pace. Miller had the holeshot but two slips in the first two laps put him on the edge of the group going for the top five. Binder fought his way to 3rd and had a 3.7 second margin to 2nd when he lost traction momentarily in Turn 9, ran off the track and fell into the gravel. Jack persisted and reached the checkered flag in 6th.
The championship standings still make for some positive reading for the factory crew: Binder is 5th in the table while Miller is 7th and 17 points from his teammate. KTM are the second-best Constructor and the crew lie 4th from 11 in the Teams rankings.
Without lifting a finger from the brake, MotoGP makes the relatively short trip to the north of the Netherlands where the TT Circuit Assen will welcome another vast attendance and bring the series to round eight before the summer break.
Jack Miller, 6th: “A good start as always. My bike gets off the line so well. Maybe there was a bit too much commitment into The Waterfall on the first lap; I almost became a statistic in that corner. It was pretty close! It shook me up a little but I was able to regroup over the next 5-10 laps and build into it. I was just missing a bit of pace today. Nothing terrible, but the other guys were building up a tenth here and there. I started coming back on those in front of me but, generally, we need a bit more speed at the start of races without worrying about the tire. Overall, a decent weekend here, and time now to roll onto Assen and get this triple header done.”
Brad Binder, DNF: “I had quite a good start and things were going well. My guys did a great job with the bike and I felt amazing. I was riding very clean and saving my tire. I could not run the pace of the first two guys but I was set in 3rd. Unfortunately, when I grabbed the front brake at the bottom of the hill I locked the front wheel a little bit and my left foot slipped off the footpeg. I was then going wide and off the track. I kept the lean angle but when I came to pick it up, the rear let go on me and I ended up crashing. Disappointing because I know I could have at least fought for a podium and the team deserved it. Thanks to the guys for all their hard work. Let’s give it a go next week.”
Francesco Guidotti, Red Bull KTM Team Manager: “A shame today. Brad said the bike was working better for him today compared to yesterday and he had a better feeling. He had a moment while losing the front, he tried to save it but then crashed when he hit the gravel. He is fine and will be ready for the next race but it was a shame he could not get his podium. Jack made a great start but then had a big moment down the hill. He had good race pace but lacked that perfect feeling to make positions back. Onto Assen now and the last race of this triple-header. We gathered more good information this weekend but we just feel a bit bad for Brad that he missed the podium.”
- From KTM Factory Racing