Red Bull KTM Ajo kick off final preseason test in Qatar11/03/2016
Brad Binder and Bo Bendsneyder successfully complete first of three nights of testing in Qatar, setting the eighth and tenth fastest times, respectively.
Just a week before the 2016 Moto3 World Championship season gets underway, the Red Bull KTM Ajo team have one final chance to show their preseason potential this weekend in Qatar. Friday saw the start of the last preseason test at the Losail International Circuit, and both Brad Binder and Bo Bendsneyder achieved positive results onboard their KTM bikes on the opening night. The pair placed eighth and tenth, respectively, on the combined timesheet.
From the start of the evening, the young riders showed that they reach the end of the preseason in strong form. Brad Binder was the fastest rider in the first session with a time of 2:08.257, whilst Bo Bendsneyder accompanied him into the Top 10 with the seventh quickest lap. For the latter, it was his first time riding at the Qatari track.
In the second session, both improved their top times by more than a second, and they then further surpassed their previous best laps in the final run. Binder set a 2:07.048 in the last hour, with Bendsneyder again inside the Top 10. The Dutchman put in a spectacular lap of 2:07.453. In the end, both riders completed a total of 51 laps -adding up to 274km.
The floodlights at the Losail International Circuit will be powered up again on Saturday night, for the second of the three nights of testing for the lower cylinder classes.
Results – Combined Standings Day 1
1. Jorge Navarro (Honda) 2:06.176
2. Livio Loi (Honda) 2:06.462 +0.286
3. Fabio Quartararo (KTM) 2:06.622 +0.446
4. Nicolo Antonelli (Honda) 2:06.689 +0.513
5. Romano Fenati (KTM) 2:06.896 +0.720
8. Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 2:07.048 +0.872
10. Bo Bendsneyder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 2:07.453 +1.277
“Tonight was difficult for us. In the first session we did not have much grip, but we were able to ride better than later on -when the grip level increased. We have been working to address different aspects with which we were not feeling comfortable. In the last session we found a setup that is definitely much better. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to make the most of this to set a fast lap as the red flag was shown, but things are improving every time we ride. We have two more nights of testing and time in which to continue working.”
“I’m happy with this first night of testing here at the Losail International Circuit. This was also the first time I’ve ridden here, so we started the day learning and understanding the layout of the track. After that, we were able to start working with the bike and improving the setup, but we are taking things step-by-step. The last session was very good; we improved our times and our pace is getting faster, so I’m satisfied. I’m eager to get back out there tomorrow and continue moving forward.”