Red Bull KTM Ajo get back to work in the Top 1007/08/2015
Positive start to the Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix, in which Oliveira, Hanika and Binder place among the ten fastest riders on the first day.
Three weeks of rest ended Friday with the first day of the tenth Grand Prix of the year, which takes place in Indianapolis this weekend. The Red Bull KTM Ajo team had rider Miguel Oliveira back in the normal dynamic of the team after his injury. He, Karel Hanika and Brad Binder placed inside the Top 10 in each of the two practice sessions.
The first good news of the day came at 9.00am, when Miguel Oliveira got back onboard his KTM for the first time after his FP1 crash in Germany. The Portuguese was immediately up to speed, moving to the top of the timesheets in the opening stages. Binder and Hanika also started with a good feeling, staying inside the Top 10. At the end of the first 40 minutes, Oliveira was third fastest –1:42.127–, Binder sixth –1:42.238– and Hanika ninth –1:42.662.
With the asphalt cleaner and more grip present, the Red Bull KTM Ajo riders lowered their times in the second free practice session. Oliveira led the way midway through the 40 minutes. Also momentarily fastest was Binder, who eventually closed out the Top 10 –1:41.895. Oliveira was finally sixth –1:41.553– and Hanika seventh –1:41.697– in the session and the combined timesheets.
Tomorrow the qualifying session for the Indianapolis GP takes place at 12:35pm local time. The Red Bull KTM Ajo team will seek to repeat a pole position they took last year through Jack Miller, and Hanika will chase his third consecutive front row.
Results (Combined practice time FP1-FP2)
1. Efren Vazquez (Honda) 1:41.266
2. Fabio Quartararo (Honda) 1:41.434 +0.168
3. Danny Kent (Honda) 1:41.437 +0.171
4. Niccolo Antonelli (Honda) 1:41.504 +0.238
5. Jorge Navarro (Honda) 1:41.518 +0.252
6. Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 1:41.553 +0.287
7. Karel Hanika (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 1:41.697 +0.431
10. Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 1:41.895 +0.629
“Today has been a very positive day, I really thought that my hand would hurt me more than it eventually did. I was able to ride well and, even though there was pain, I could put up with it. We will have to work to be able to handle the pain for the entire race. I hope to continue in the same way with our work tomorrow, because so far the setup with which we are working is good. We need to continue taking steps forward and be faster in order to climb positions ahead of qualifying.”
“Today went very well. I was really keen to get back on the KTM after the summer break. I’m glad I didn’t struggle to feel comfortable and from the first lap I could go fast. I’m very pleased with how the bike is going. In the second practice session we wanted to save the tyres and only push on the last outing. I tried to push hard but the setup was not designed for the new tyres. My feeling for tomorrow is very good and we know what to change to get a good result. We will see.”
“Today was a great day and I’m very happy about riding the bike again. I enjoyed myself a lot, although today the conditions were quite difficult. In the morning the track was dirty and I tried to stay focused on increasing rear grip; in the end we put in some good laps. In FP2 the conditions were not much better than in FP1. We tried to work to the maximum with the old tyres and improve as much as possible. I think we’ve got a good pace but I hope to improve. Tomorrow we will work to achieve better results.”