Bittersweet third place for Brad Binder in Qatar GP qualifying


Red Bull KTM Ajo rider takes third in the first QP of the year, but will start from the second row after incurring a penalty. Bo Bendsneyder –eighth– also sanctioned and will start from eleventh.

Binder, Moto3, Qatar MotoGP, 2016

Binder, Moto3, Qatar MotoGP, 2016

The first Moto3 qualifying session of the year was held on Saturday at the Losail International Circuit, bringing great results for the Red Bull KTM Ajo team. Brad Binder took third place in the session -second best result of his Grand Prix career so far- whilst Bo Bendsneyder made his qualifying debut with a strong eighth position. However, penalties for irresponsible riding in FP3 yesterday sees both riders dropping three places on the starting grid for the Qatar GP, to sixth and eleventh, respectively.

Teamwork was once again one of the most important aspects of the qualifying session. At a circuit that features long straights, Brad Binder and Bo Bendsneyder helped each other to set the best lap time possible. Located in the middle of the timesheet for much of the session, the Red Bull KTM Ajo pair made their attack with seven minutes remaining. Binder set his fastest lap –2:06.245– 2 minutes before the chequered flag fell, while Bendsneyder waited until his last attempt to put in a 2:06.539.

The Moto3 World Championship’s first race of the season kicks off on Sunday from 6pm –local time. The Red Bull KTM Ajo has won the Qatar GP on 2 previous occasions in Moto3: In 2013 with Luis Salom and in 2014 with Jack Miller.

Results (Qualifying Practice)
1. Romano Fenati (KTM) 2:06.131
2. Livio Loi (Honda) 2:06.178 +0.047
3. Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 2:06.245 +0.114
4. Fabio Quartararo (KTM) 2:06.399 +0.268
5. Jorge Navarro (Honda) 2:06.448 +0.317
8. Bo Bendsneyder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 2:06.539 +0.408


“Today it was very important to get a good result and qualify on either the first or second row of the grid, because yesterday I made a mistake that saw me pick up a three-place penalty. In any case, I feel very good; we were able to get third position in the QP session and that gives me a good feeling about the race tomorrow. We have worked hard on our pace over the past few days and I think I’m ready to get a good result tomorrow. We will go all-out for it.”


“At the beginning of the qualifying session things were difficult; it was very windy on track, so the lap times were not as fast as in the test or this week’s Free Practice sessions. In any case, I continued pushing hard. Along with Brad [Binder] I think we did some good teamwork. We helped each other, rode together and gave one another slipstreams, which enabled us to set good lap times. Tomorrow is my first race in the World Championship and I’m looking forward to it.”