Binder: Sometimes you have to take a gamble and today it worked

Brad Binder’s incredible bravery steers him to a second ever MotoGP victory after surviving the final five laps in the wet on slick tyres.
Brad Binder MotoGP race, Austrian MotoGP, 15 August 2021
Brad Binder MotoGP race, Austrian MotoGP, 15 August 2021
© Gold and Goose Photography

Brad Binder pulled off a miracle win at the Austrian MotoGP after deciding not to change to wet tyres late on. 

After a light shower earlier in the race, heavy rain hit the Red Bull Ring with just six laps to go, which inevitably led to most of the leading riders changing bikes. 

When race leader Marc Marquez led a five rider group into pit lane, Binder decided to carry on - a decision that saw the South African produce some of the most skilful riding we’ve ever seen. 

While Binder rapidly closed in on the front group before they pitted, the KTM rider was having a ‘horrendous race’ in his words until that point. 

Speaking after the race, Binder said: "I went to bed last night thinking all I want today is a podium. It’s been so long! It’s been the longest (stretch of time) in I don’t know how many years since I was on the podium. 

"I’ve been close a few times, had a few fourth places, but haven’t been back. To be honest, I was having a horrendous race before I decided to stay out and everyone else came in. 

"The rear tyre was like nothing I’ve had all weekend. Everytime I tried braking it would just slide everywhere. I’d open the throttle and just wouldn’t go forward. 

"I was having a huge struggle out there, but when I saw it starting to rain I closed up onto the front group and was thinking there’s just four laps to go. I could see the guys getting ready to go in, because I saw Marc [Marquez] look behind him and I couldn’t decide whether I should go or not. 

"I just decided in the last moment when I saw the group pull in to the pits to just try. The first lap was good, but the last two were something else. 

"The last lap the brakes went completely cold and so did the tyres. I really struggled to stay on track. But anyway, sometimes you have to take the gamble and today it worked. I’m super happy about that."

The win for Binder is his second ever in the premier class following his maiden victory at Brno last season. 

Binder joked about using the advice of his brother Darryn who had previously said he was ‘impressed’ with how much grip the dry tyres had in the wet, when debating whether to pit or not. 

Binder said: "I remember my brother (Darryn Binder) telling me that he was impressed with how much grip there was in the wet with slicks, so I think that had something to do with it [laughs]. 

"But you know what, I would happily have crashed giving it a go. At the end of the day I’m really happy to be here right now."

Read More