South African Brad Binder took the first podium at the Kusa team in the opening race of the 2022 season in Qatar at the Lusail racetrack, and the credit also goes to the improved handling of this year's RC16 motorcycle.
Binder started the race from seventh place and made it to third place before the exit from the first corner, behind the factory Honda of Paul Espargaro and Marco Marquez.
“The start of the race was amazing! I missed a bit on the start, but as I started to accelerate I quickly caught the guys in front of me. It was very useful for me to get to the third place immediately, because I was able to drive more calmly and watch the tires, because we knew that they would wear out a lot by the end of the race, especially the last one. ”
“I followed the leaders for a while and then they increased the pace, so I thought they would run away from me. I tried to drive constantly and fast. When Enea overtook me I couldn’t defend myself, I just hoped I wouldn’t make any mistake. Congratulations to both (Bastianini and Espargaro) as they were very fast. In the end, it was very difficult, in the last two laps I drove at the border and tried to catch Eneo, but I was not fast enough. ”
Binder attributed the KTM's good performance on the track, which usually did not suit the Austrian manufacturer, to the improved handling of the RC16. “The motorcycle is turning nicely now. Last year, unless we braked really hard, we only had trouble directing the front wheel into a bend while turning. Now I can transfer a lot more speed into the bend and that’s a huge difference. The engine gives you a lot more confidence, because you are not completely on the edge in every turn. ”
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