Brad Binder scored 6th position at a bright but cool Silverstone circuit for the British Grand Prix and the twelfth round of 2021 MotoGP™ as the series returned to the UK for the first time since the summer of 2019.
After the double-header at Red Bull Ring, MotoGP moved to the second fastest circuit on the calendar and the longest layout. Silverstone’s eighteen corners and near-6km length provided a technical test for both the riders and bike set-up and the choice between medium and hard compounds. Bright but windy and chilly summer conditions created a stable environment from Friday and the 20-lap MotoGP race was run in the dry and with grippy asphalt.
Brad Binder was the most advanced RC16 rider on the grid and began from 12th and the fourth row. The South African weathered a sluggish start to rapidly pick up his speed and hover on the edge of the top ten. From this position Binder became faster and more decisive with his overtaking moves to eventually work his way to 6th.
Equally proactive were Tech3 KTM Factory Racing riders Iker Lecuona and Danilo Petrucci. The Spaniard latched onto Binder’s exhaust fumes and followed his brandmate up to 7th for his second-best result this season and his second-highest in almost two years of MotoGP. Petrucci made ground to 10th and his third top-ten standing so far with the RC16. Miguel Oliveira was plagued with rear grip issues and finished one position outside the points in 16th.
The Gran Premio Tissot de Aragón will take MotoGP to the climes of Spain and the MotorLand Aragon circuit for round thirteen in two weeks time.
Brad Binder: “Today was a solid day, all things considered. I had a tough start to the race and struggled a lot in the first few laps but as the race went on I got stronger and stronger. I’m really happy with the rhythm I managed to keep until the end. I want to say a huge thanks to the team; this weekend has not been easy for us and the guys have worked non-stop. We tried everything and the best bike we had all weekend is the bike we had for the race.”
Iker Lecuona: “I’m really, really happy! Qualifying yesterday was difficult for me. I made some mistakes but I knew the pace was there. In Warm Up this morning, I felt really strong, finishing in P5 and I knew if I can recover some places, I can fight in the front group. The start of the race was ok, although I tried to save the tyre a bit because the conditions were cold. Lap by lap I managed to improve my lap time. On the last lap, I overtook the last rider to finish in P7, which is my second best result in MotoGP and it happened in the dry. I want to say thanks to my team because this weekend was very good and very strong.”
Danilo Petrucci: “It was a good top 10 result. We managed to hit the target we set yesterday. Unfortunately, I lost a lot of time in overtaking, mainly on the straights, so it was difficult for me to pass other riders. In the end, it was pretty decent. I think we could have been a little bit better. Anyway, it’s a good result. Now I really have a very good feeling on the bike, maybe Aragon will be even better with the KTM for us. We will fight for a good result there as well.”
Miguel Oliveira: “It was not the race we were looking for, at least the result. It felt like I didn’t have a lot of grip from the beginning. Nothing really clicked for me this weekend. Hopefully we can keep working with a positive attitude and get things going in our way again in Aragon.”
Mike Leitner, Red Bull KTM Race Manager: “In general we’re quite pleased with the result. It was tricky for us to find the right set-up for this circuit from Friday. Silverstone is one of the tracks where we haven’t done quite so many laps with our race package. In five years MotoGP missed two races here but Brad and Iker did a great job today and overtook a lot of riders. Danilo also made a lot of forward progress. We tried to help Miguel for set-up but he was struggling with rear grip. We’ll go to Aragon hoping to start in a better way.”
Results MotoGP Monster Energy British Grand Prix 2021
1. Fabio Quartararo (FRA) Yamaha 40:20.579
2. Alex Rins (ESP) Suzuki +2.663
3. Aleix Espargaro (ESP), Aprilia +4.105
4. Jack Miller (AUS), Ducati +4.254
5. Pol Espargaro (ESP) Honda +8.462
6. Brad Binder (RSA), Red Bull KTM Factory Racing +12.189
7. Iker Lecuona (ESP), Tech3 KTM Factory Racing +13.560
12. Danilo Petrucci (ITA), Tech3 KTM Factory Racing +16.287
16. Miguel Oliveira (POR), Red Bull KTM Factory Racing +22.022