The irony of course is that the 24-year-old is far from a ‘rookie’. Miguel Oliveira is the first athlete to have progressed through Red Bull KTM’s newly established Grand Prix ladder: having represented the factory in Moto3 (6 wins) and Moto2 (6 victories and 21 podiums). The fresh link with the Tech3 MotoGP squad for 2019 opened up the perfect ‘learning’ opportunity for Portugal’s sole racer in the category, and he impressed with his hard work, intelligence, application and speed in the first rounds that his tenure with KTM was impressive enough and quickly confirmed again for 2020.
The Sound. The Smell. The Show. Nothing compares to a more memorable atmosphere at the peak of two-wheel motorsports on asphalt than experiencing the MotoGP™ together with KTM.
Numbering well over 120 people and fabricating up to 70 race bikes to tackle classes from the Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup to the peak of MotoGP, the road racing division of KTM’s motorsport department has expanded and developed at a rate of speed akin to the motorcycles themselves. Pit Beirer is at the helm of any operation involving an orange two-wheeler going for a chequered flag but responsibility for MotoGP in particular falls to Jens Hainbach.
At 28 years of age Red Bull KTM’s new factory MotoGP rider Johann Zarco is already a double world champion, holder of podium finishes in all classes of Grand Prix, a winner in two categories and the most successful Frenchman in the history of the sport.
Nine riders and motorcycles filled the new City Hall building in Mattighofen. The 2019 presentation not only showcased the fresh faces and colors that will adorn KTM’s fastest ever collection of race machinery but also the stunning breadth of the factory’s effort in MotoGP.
MotoGP faces a significant change for 2019 when the Moto2 class gets a brand-new engine supplier. The technical swap around means some busy times for Aki Ajo and an important part of his ‘development’ program for KTM’s racing structure. We asked him about it …
Red Bull KTM’s confirmation of a two-year contract with French ace Johann Zarco is one of the headline-grabbers of the MotoGP season so far. What can the works team expect once the #5 becomes orange? To gain some insight into the 28-year-old athlete we asked one of the people that knows him best; Aki Ajo.