Red Bull KTM Ajo look ahead08/04/2015
Brad Binder, Karel Hanika and Miguel Oliveira face the Red Bull Grand Prix of The Americas looking to show their true potential.
The first Grand Prix of 2015, held two weeks ago in Qatar, was not as successful as the Red Bull KTM Ajo riders had hoped. Thus, the second event of the year this weekend in Austin, Texas, has been eagerly awaited by Brad Binder, Karel Hanika and Miguel Oliveira. Raring to get back on their KTM bikes, the trio hope to return to fighting for the podium on the Moto3 World Championship’s first US visit of the season. Last year a Red Bull KTM Ajo rider, Jack Miller, took victory at Austin.
Despite making their best starts to a World Championship season so far, Binder and Hanika were not completely satisfied with their respective tenth and thirteenth places at Losail. Aware of their potential, both had expected to be higher up the order and to fight for the rostrum. Teammate Miguel Oliveira had looked a likely Top 3 contender, but contact with another rider in the race left him out of the battle.
The Red Bull KTM Ajo riders are heading to a circuit which is to their liking. Last year Hanika achieved the best result of the trio, claiming his first Top 10 finish. Oliveira had to settle with a fifteenth place and Binder did not complete the race. This year the track hosts a MotoGP round for the third time, and is renowned for its technical layout with a 1200 metre-long back straight. The first objective for the riders will be to improve on their qualifying from Qatar.
The Grand Prix schedule returns to normal this weekend, starting on Friday with free practice and ending on Sunday with the 18-lap Moto3 race at 11:00am local time.
Circuit information – Austin
Length: 5.513 m / 3.426 miles
Width: 15 metres
Left corners: 11
Right corners: 9
Longest straight: 1.200 m / 0.746 miles
“I am very motivated for the second round of the World Championship. We had the last couple of days to think over and analyse the race, and also to study what others have done. It is important to keep up the pace, to constantly be at the front and also to get a slipstream on the long straight.
This is a circuit with flowing corners and hard braking. The track is also wide, which allows for many different lines and provides many overtaking opportunities. As such, I anticipate a very interesting race. Our goal is to regain points and move up positions in the championship.”
“Obviously, in the end, Qatar was not quite as we had expected. It is true that the qualifying session did not go as we had hoped, but we knew we could be up at the front and we did so for much of the race. It’s a pity about the end, where we could not stay in the podium spots. It is not the end of the world, because it is only the first race, but I really want to show our potential in Austin. We have to go step-by-step, session after session. COTA is a track that I like more than Losail. I am excited to get back on my KTM for this second race and fight for the podium.”
“I think the first race of the year was ok, but the end result could have been better. So I am eager to race in Austin, because last year I managed my first Top 10 in the World Championship there. It’s a circuit I like, very nice and fun on the bike. I sincerely believe we can get a good result. Learning lessons from Qatar, we must improve our position in the qualifying session and the race, stay in the first group, but being more incisive. Let’s go!”