Fifth pole for Jack Miller and Karel Hanika on second row12/07/2014
Red Bull KTM Ajo riders have great second day of German Grand Prix, with Miller taking pole and Hanika taking career best fourth place.
The Red Bull KTM Ajo team today had their best qualifying session of the season. Following the foundation set out on Friday, Jack Miller again dominated practice for the German Grand Prix and took pole position for round nine of the season. It is Miller’s fifth pole, and his second in less than two weeks after he claimed the qualifying top spot at Assen. Adding to the team’s joy, Karel Hanika placed fourth –his best result from the first nine races of his rookie year.
In the third free practice, the Moto3 World Championship leader was again at his best. After a few adjustments on his first two stints, he three times bested the fastest lap at the circuit, stopping the clock definitively at 1:26.767. His teammate did not start so well, making a mistake on his opening laps which hindered him for the rest of the session. On the first braking point of his third lap, he clipped the wet grass alongside the track and crashed. He got back out on track thanks to an excellent job by his Red Bull KTM Ajo team and finally put in a total of 16 laps to place twentieth –1:28.479.
In the qualifying session, held under a threatening grey sky, Miller managed to make use of the track conditions better than anyone. After an initial short stint of three flying laps, he went back to the garage, returned to the track and set a 1:26.997 time. He was able to do three more laps in the low 1:27s, but with 15 minutes to go it started to rain enough to prevent the further improvement of times give him his fifth pole of the year.
The strategy also favoured Karel Hanika, fourth in the qualifying session when the rain began. Improving his feelings at the German track riding alone, he was able to use the reference of his teammate to set a time of 1:27.357 and qualify fourth –his best placing to date. He will start tomorrow’s 11am race from the second row, just behind Miller.
Results – Qualifying practice
1. Jack Miller (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 1:26.997
2. Alexis Masbou (Honda) 1:27.106 +0.109
3. Alex Marquez (Honda) 1:27.143 +0.146
4. Karel Hanika (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 1:27.357 +0.360
5. Danny Kent (Red Bull Husqvarna Ajo) 1:27.357 +0.360
Jack Miller >> Audio (solely for radio use)
“We already had a good setup from yesterday, but today we changed some things. The results were very good and I am very happy. I am not completely satisfied with the soft tyre. I tried to make a good lap with it, and had planned to use the medium tyre in the last stint –because with the first one front end was suffering too much. This morning we also improved our times. I think I can still go faster, but I’m very happy with pole position.
Looking ahead to the race tomorrow, we have to be smart and push hard. The strategy will be the same as always tomorrow: Go for the win. I think tomorrow will be a good race. We’ll see what happens.”
Karel Hanika >> Audio (solely for radio use)
“I am very happy with this result. I did not expect something like this because it was a difficult day yesterday and this morning was also tough, with that small crash. It wasn’t difficult to recover the feeling, but we saved tyres and at the start of the qualifying session we were already putting in some very fast laps. Above all, we were very consistent riding alone. It also helped me and gave me confidence. Then I rode behind Jack [Miller]. I followed him and I gave everything. It might even have gone better, but I’m very happy with fourth place, my best result in qualifying. Now we just have to wait until the race.
Tomorrow I have a clear goal; stay on the bike and finish the race –which will be a long 27 laps. It will be difficult. We will see how the weather goes and try to stay with the front group for as many laps as possible. I hope Jack wins and that I get a good result.”