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Old 01-17-2013, 12:53 AM   #14293
Team ⌘R
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Joined: Nov 2010
Location: Athens, Greece
Oddometer: 3,171
And while we wait, here is an interesting interview with Pit Beirer, head of KTM Factory Racing.

The early phases of 2013 have already seen KTM’s vast motorsport division swing into action. Those currently not preoccupied with the clock in South America for the Dakar, or the timing sections of AMA Supercross tracks are testing, fine-tuning and pouring over logistics and schedules for the various racing calendars that are looming. KTM managed 12 world championship titles in just ten months during 2012; a phenomenal ‘take’ through a wide spectrum of motorcycle sport. To repeat the feat would be something equally astonishing.

The man pulling the strings from Enduro, to rally, to motocross to Moto3 is German Pit Beirer. The 40 year old was renowned for a tenacity and determination as a motocrosser that allowed him to be one of the great Grand Prix riders to emerge from his country. The same attributes line his methodology and attitude to the current Orange racing effort, which he has helmed for seven years. Here are some of his ‘pearls of wisdom’…

Finding and forging the best crew…

I’m not scared to bring the right people to KTM. Those like Stefan Everts, Tony Cairoli or Roger De Coster for example; this is not an operation that is just about me or my work. I always want to bring new ideas or directions to KTM and in every discipline I want the best people, not the second-best. This, for sure, is one of the key ingredients to success. I am lucky that [KTM CEO] Mr Pierer follows this philosophy because it costs money but I believe that employing solid racing people with some charisma and courage is very important. Also you cannot underestimate the human side of what goes into a team. The ability to bond and work together is vital and for me is the first priority ahead of qualifications, diplomas or whatever.

Making new limits and having the backing…

I always want to propose projects. We’ve been able to move through things like the 350, having a suspension link on the bikes and signing someone like Ryan Dungey. It meant going to the company and asking for a big investment, but we could deliver results. I ask for budget but I always keep to it and never stretch it; this is how I gained trust from the board. I asked, kept true and delivered, and now after a few successful projects I don’t need to prove certain things and I believe the board trust 100% in our motorsport activities. There are not many manufacturers where that direct line and personal relationship is so close and immediate. Mr Pierer is there for us and we are talking about a man who is mentally very strong. I will talk to him and he’ll think for ten seconds and give me an answer ‘yes’ or ‘no’. If it’s ‘yes’ then we get on right-away. I follow a similar approach, and will always give a direct answer to anyone when I can. I think this is one of the positive attributes of our company; that we can decide and move so quickly and beat other companies with time schedules.

The right mind-set…

Mentality. I hate to lose! I still look behind many details; I want that workshop clean, if a rider wants a small change on a bike then I want that we try to make it happen so that nothing is missed. We might not win a title because any racing season or sport involves some luck but I always want us to be ready to fight for one. I think we are very well prepared and I want to keep motivation in the whole group. Motivation is important. I’m not the kind of boss that cracks the whip. I like to bring in targets for us to hit and then I expect the people around me to push themselves towards those aims. I think we’ve managed that quite well.
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