KTM should probably have a place for Miller, Pol Espargaró or Rins in the Red Bull factory team. That’s why Miguel Oliveira is set to return to Tech3. The Portuguese has not been able to come to terms with that so far.
Miguel Oliveira started his winning streak at Mugello in 2021 with second place, which then culminated a week later with victory at the Catalunya GP and continued with places 2 and 5 in Saxony and Assen. But then the Portuguese crashed badly in FP1 at Spielberg. He sustained a painful hand injury that prevented him from performing his best for weeks.
Ahead of the 2022 season, Miguel Oliveira said that when he analyzed the mediocre 2021 season, he realized he would have to learn to accept average results in the future. For he has previously played quite respectable points away several times due to falls and thus compromised his world championship position.
At KTM, there will definitely be changes in 2023 in the MotoGP squad, which now consists of Binder and Oliveira at Red Bull KTM and is formed on Tech3 with Remy Gardner and Raúl Fernández.
Due to the rift between Remy Gardner manager Paco Sanchez and KTM Motorsport director Pit Beirer, it’s hard to imagine the Australian staying. And KTM needs a place to accommodate a rider from the trio of Alex Rins, Jack Miller and Pol Espargaró.
Pit Beirer told SPEEDWEEK.com in the fall of 2021 that neither Binder nor Oliveira have a guarantee of a spot on the 2023 Red Bull KTM Factory Team. You may also be transferred to the Tech3-KTM team if the results are not entirely satisfactory.
With Binder, these thoughts do not come up, for he has pulled the chestnuts out of the fire for KTM in 25 races, just like Pol Espargaró in the four years from 2017 to 2020. Binder has scored 23 times in the last 25 Grands Prix.
Today, Miguel Oliveira was surprised by SPEEDWEEK.com’s detailed knowledge of his contract details. But he did not deny this clause in the contract.
The Mandalika winner admitted that he had already been contacted by KTM about a possible return to Hervé Poncharal’s Tech3 team. Oliveira: “Yes, the Tech3 thing is something that KTM has already talked to me about. That’s pretty good news for me. I’m asking myself a few questions now: What could I have done differently? And what more can I do? What else can I do to be offered the same position I have now? I do not have an answer to that yet. “
But Miguel Oliveira has been in the business long enough to understand that deserving riders like Pol Espargaró and Jack Miller are not leaving the Repsol-Honda or Ducati-Lenovo factory team to join the KTM Tech3 customer team. The same goes for Alex Rins, the triple MotoGP winner who is looking for a job after leaving Suzuki.
While Oliveira has already secured four MotoGP victories for KTM, he won the first two at Spielberg and Portimão in 2020 with the Tech3-KTM team.
But Oliveira currently lacks the aforementioned stable average results to land at the top of the World Cup. Pol Espargaró shone at KTM 2020 as number five in the world championship and Binder 2021 as sixth in the world championship.
“I do not want to focus on the four MotoGP victories. For sometimes good work is not immediately translated into good results. But the MotoGP project is run by top executives who are not involved in every race, as Pit has many other management responsibilities on his shoulders.But in the end it is the results that count.What is on the results list on Sunday is the truth.The results do not lie.But until this final result comes on Sunday, there will be a lot that also counts for it overall picture, ”emphasizes Oliveira.
Oliveira knows that only about half a dozen riders have already signed MotoGP contracts for 2023, and KTM has not yet exercised the option on him.
“My contract situation for the upcoming season is still open,” admits the Portuguese, who is considered a KTM veteran and has already competed in the Red Bull Rookies Cup on a KTM.
When Suzuki retires and a new Moto2 star in Celestino Vietti pushes into the MotoGP class, three places fall.
Oliveira can imagine that based on his past performance, the other producers will not beat him down.
“I know there are not many vacancies in MotoGP factory teams. At the moment there are many riders, but not so many places,” said the 16-time KTM GP winner in an exclusive interview with SPEEDWEEK.com with a laugh.
Nevertheless, Oliveira still can not get used to the idea of returning to the Tech3 racing team after two years in the Red Bull Works team, although KTM is providing more and more manpower to the customer team, and the technical updates are also being delivered faster than before.
“My goal is to continue to ride in the top team,” said the two-time vice world champion (Moto3 / 2015 and Moto2 / 2018).
Championship status after 7 of 20 Grand Prix:
1. Quartararo 102 points. 2 Aleix Espargaró 98 3 Bastianini 94 4 Rins 69 5 Miller 62 6 Zarco 62 7 Bagnaia 56 8 Brad Binder 56 9 Mir 56 10 Marc Marquez 54 11 Oliveira 43. Morbidelli 19 18 Bezzecchi 19 19 Alex Marquez 18 20 Dovizioso 8 21. Darryn Binder 6. 22. Di Giannantonio 3. 23. Gardner 3.
1. Ducati 156 points. 2. Yamaha 102. 3. Aprilia 99. 4. KTM 84. 5. Suzuki 80. 6. Honda 67.
1. Aprilia Racing 131 points. 2 Suzuki Ecstar 125 3 Monster Energy Yamaha 121 4 Ducati Lenovo 118 5 Red Bull KTM Factory 99 6 Gresini Racing MotoGP 97 7 Repsol Honda 94 8 Pramac Racing 90 9 LCR Honda 48 10 Mooney VR46 Racing 1 Yamaha RNF 11 Med Tech Factory 1 Yamaha RNF3U . 3