The 2020 MotoGP season was a year of redemption for KTM’s premier class teams. After years of disappointing results, Red Bull KTM and Tech 3 KTM combined for three wins and five additional podiums. The success led to MotoGP rescinding KTM’s development concessions, putting them on equal footing with Ducati, Honda, Yamaha, and Suzuki.
In 2021, young guns Brad Binder and Miguel Oliveira lead the Red Bull KTM squad while veteran Danilo Petrucci takes the reins at Tech 3 KTM. With great expectations resting on the Austrian manufacturer’s shoulders, KTM just agreed to a five-year contract that will keep the brand in MotoGP’s premier class until 2026.
“I’m extremely happy to be able to announce this new five-year contract with Dorna,” said KTM Motorsports Director Pit Beirer. “I want to take this opportunity to thank Dorna especially and Mr Carmelo Ezpeleta and his whole team because we’ve had four great years together already and they are a really professional partner in this important sport. After only a few seasons we have put this project on a very solid base, so it is a positive step to continue our MotoGP involvement up to 2026.”
KTM joined the top MotoGP ranks during the 2017 season. However, the Ready to Race brand struggled in its first three years, finishing second-to-last in the constructors' championship and only capturing one podium in 2018. By the end of the 2020 season, KTM leapfrogged the almighty Honda team for 4th place in the manufacturers’ standings.
Prior to 2017, the Red Bull KTM team captured numerous wins in 125cc, 250cc, and Moto3 classes. Current MotoGP riders Brad Binder and Miguel Oliveira also cut their teeth on Reb Bull KTM machines, capturing 14 wins in the Moto2 ranks. The program has always had a robust developmental arm and the long-awaited MotoGP success is a product of those past efforts.
“We are proud of the profile and the prestige of not only being in MotoGP but having an impact at this level,” said KTM CMO Hubert Trunkenpolz. “We can see the influence of MotoGP success across the business as well as the significance for the brand on a global stage. We’re only too happy to remain part of the MotoGP paddock with our current structure and some promising projects ahead.”