Red Bull KTM Ajo test in the wet


Hanika, Binder and Oliveira use final hour of the testing day in Jerez to ride in fully wet conditions.


The weather again played a key role at Jerez on the second day of testing for the Moto3 riders. Just like yesterday, rain has disrupted the plans of all Moto3 teams, with the Red Bull KTM Ajo riders focusing their work on the third –completely wet– session. Karel Hanika was the fastest man on track in the rain.

Temperatures of 11°C and an only half-wet asphalt greeted the Red Bull KTM Ajo trio on Wednesday morning, and they elected to stay in the pits during the first session and wait for conditions to improve in the second. They did so, but only for the opening minutes; the session was called to a halt  40 minutes ahead of schedule due to rainfall. There were only six laps put in by the Red Bull KTM Ajo riders, and so they once again had to delay their work schedule.

In the last hour of track time for the lower cylinder category, Hanika, Oliveira and Binder put on wet tyres for their most important activity of the day: Putting in laps on a fully wet track and with rain falling. The Czech set the best times under these conditions, leading for much of the hour and clocking a 1:59.475 to top the timesheets. Binder, with a 2:02.043 lap, was fifth and Oliveira seventh with a 2:03.788.

Tomorrow sees the final day of testing at Jerez Circuit, with weather forecasts predicting similar conditions to today for the last time out on track before next week’s Qatar GP.

Results – Combined Standings Day 2
1. Jorge Navarro (Honda) 1:48.189
2. Danny Kent (Honda) 1:48.930 +0.741
3. Fabio Quartararo (Honda) 1:49.033 +0.844
4. Jorge Martin (Mahindra) 1:49.265 +1.076
5. Enea Bastianini (Honda) 1:49.277 +1.088
19. Karel Hanika (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 1:50.992 +2.803
21. Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 1:51.394 +3.205
31. Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 1:54.797 +6.608

#44 Miguel Oliveira,
“Today we had one session in completely wet conditions, in which we looked to gain confidence in these circumstances. Although the bike is going very well and the feeling with it is good, I didn’t find the pace I wanted. It was my first time riding this bike on a wet track; I had already done it in preseason here at Jerez, but that was with the 2014 version. If it continues to rain tomorrow, we will continue working to improve in wet conditions. Now we have to compare telemetry with Karel [Hanika ] –who was very fast today– to see if we find something that allows us to evolve further.”

#41 Brad Binder,
“Today was a bit of a difficult day, because from the first runout we had some small electronic problems that would not let me ride comfortably. We changed various settings on the bike and finally, with 15 minutes to go in the last session today, we found exactly what we needed to change, so I’m very happy about that. I have to thank the team for the work they have done. Now the issue is resolved and tomorrow we will try to work more normally. We will see if the weather conditions are good.”

#98 Karel Hanika,
“There was a lot of water on the track today and the conditions were very difficult. We had a very good feeling in the wet and the times were good. We wanted to find a base setting for wet races, because not every round will be in the dry, and it didn’t go badly. I would have liked to have put in more laps, but we have to be positive because the feeling is good. I know this track very well and understand where there is grip and where there isn’t. We are happy with this second day.”