Miller defends embattled Binder: "We have seen the GOAT Rossi make that mistake"

Jack Miller calls for calm around soon-to-be-MotoGP rider Darryn Binder following sharp criticism for his part in ending Dennis Foggia's Moto3 title bid

Darryn Binder, Dennis Foggia


Jack Miller has come to the defence of soon-to-be MotoGP rider Darryn Binder after sharp criticism across the paddock for wiping out title contender Dennis Foggia on the final lap of this weekend’s Moto3 Algarve round at Portimao.

In what has been a rollercoaster couple of weeks for the youngster after he was confirmed to be making the largely unprecedented switch from Moto3 to MotoGP next season with RNF Yamaha, Binder has been vilified for his involvement in a collision that brought an abrupt end to Foggia’s title challenge against Pedro Acosta.

Foggia led Acosta coming into the final lap knowing a win would be enough to keep the title battle alive to the final round in Valencia the following weekend, but had just been passed into the Turn 3 hairpin by his Spanish rival.

However, Binder in fourth was also using the moment to try snatch third from Sergio Garcia, but mis-judged his braking and instead t-boned Foggia, taking both the Italian and Garcia out and crowning Acosta on the spot. Binder completed the race but was quickly disqualified.

In a year that has seen Moto3 riding standards come under scrutiny and after Deniz Oncu was banned for two races for causing a terrifying accident at COTA, Binder’s involvement in this case is made particularly inconvenient by the fact many are questioning whether he is cut out for such a vast leap in power and pressure.

The criticism has been swift and harsh, with numerous riders calling for the implementation of a ‘Superlicence’ similar to what is used in F1 (see separate story), while others called for him to be banned from his Moto3 swansong in Spain.

However, Binder has found one ally in the only other rider to have made the Moto3 to MotoGP move in the past, Jack Miller.

Though admitting it was a bad mistake, he sympathises with the situation, which he believes has only been hyped up because it involved a title contender and came from a rider no doubt feeling pressure to prove himself following the widespread cynicism of his move.

“Contact is one thing, I understand. There has to be a margin, for sure. I 100% agree. I think Moto3 and what happened today was not nice for all areas. For Foggia of course because he lost, but also for Pedro because I think it takes away from what he has done this season as a rookie, putting together the season that he has done.

"I felt like he had a lot of margin towards the end of the race and this robbed him of the feeling of fighting really for his championship. It was a strange act today. These things can happen, but am I nervous or am I worried [about Binder in MotoGP next year]? I don't think so.

"It’s a whole different kettle of fish. MotoGP is another level and I don't think we need to be worried about that because today Daz might need to check his eyesight because he went in there a lot quicker than he should have. 

“But I think I can speak on behalf of everybody and say we all make mistakes. We have to wait and see how it is.”

"It takes more than a Moto3 rider I think to make this mistake. I think everybody can make this mistake. Yes, Darryn is a bit wild or whatever, but like Joan said, and I can say from first-hand experience, the pressure of going from Moto3 to MotoGP directly and how much it puts on you and to be honest, he’s just scratching the surface of what’s to come when it comes to taking on that challenge. I can tell him first hand.

"But we have seen the GOAT, Valentino Rossi, do the same mistake after nine world titles. So, everybody can do it