PODCAST | SA's Brad Binder chats about prepping for his debut MotoGP race, the first of the season
• SA-born Binder joins MotoGP in 2020.
• Binder will ride for the KTM factory team.
• He has gained 4kg to be able to control the bike.
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South African motorbike rider, Brad Binder, is preparing to make his debut in the top category of motorbike racing: MotoGP. Having been a constant figure in the sport since 2011, Binder rose through the ranks of Moto3 and Moto2 to line up alongside the very best in the world this year.
In an interview, Binder gave a glimpse into what takes to prepare for the MotoGP season. He says that the MotoGP bike is vastly different from the Moto2 one and that his initial challenge was getting to grips with it. While challenging, he is a lot more comfortable ahead of the first race of the season on 19 July.
Between the end of the 2019 season and now, Binder has gained around 4kg of muscle; just to be able to handle the demands of this year's bike. Binder describes the bike as 'super-physical', which adds greater context to the need to up his strength for 2020.
In his debut year, 2011, Binder competed in both Moto3 and the Red Bull MotoGP Rookie Cup and made the full-time switch to Moto3 in 2012. Between 2012 and 2015, Binder appeared on the podium six times, but his best season would come in 2016.
Having joined the Red Bull KTM Ajo team in 2015, Binder became so comfortable with the team and confident on the bike that he won the Moto3 championship in 2016. His first victory came spectacularly in Jerez, having been demoted to the back of the grid and clawing his way through the field to take the victory.
On that day, Binder became the first South African to win a motorcycle race since Jon Ekerold at the 1981 Italian GP.
From 2017 to 2019, Binder competed in Moto2 but will race for the KTM factory team in the top category this year.
Brad Binder (Red Bull Content Pool)