A heroic ride at the Italian MotoGP by Brad Binder saved some face for Red Bull KTM at Mugello on Sunday, but the Austrian outfit knows that they’ll have to raise their game in qualifying.
After starting from a lowly 16th place on the grid, Binder gained all of nine places to finish in seventh, a mere four seconds off the pace of race winner Francesco Bagnaia.
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“The biggest problem comes when we start as far back as the fifth row; the margin by the first lap is still too big,” Red Bull KTM team manager Francesco Guidotti said.
“We know we have to improve the qualifying. It’s the first step we have to make for a better race result.”
The nine points Binder earned at Mugello enabled him to move up one place to seventh in the MotoGP world championship standings.
He has 65 points after eight of the season’s 20 races and is 57 points behind leader Fabio Quartararo.
“We still need to work on our speed and pace with new tires. I lost time at the beginning but could pull it back by the end,” Binder told his team’s website.
“I’m also a bit frustrated today because I know we could have done a bit better than what we did. We just didn’t have the speed at the start but we do have a lot of data now from the changes we made this weekend and I hope that will help us for next weekend in Barcelona.”
Brad’s younger brother Darryn Binder finished 16th at the Italian MotoGP to come within one place of earning points for the second time in his debut season in the premier class riding for WithU Yamaha RNF.
Darryn set the second-fastest time ever recorded during a MotoGP race at 358.8 km/h.
Ducati rider Jorge Martin of Spain’s 363.6 km/h recorded at Mugello on Sunday was the fastest time ever recorded during a MotoGP race.
The Catalan Grand Prix at Catalunya takes place on 5 June.
To see the full MotoGP calendar, click here.