Brad Binder fastest on Moto3’s return to Europe

22/04/2016

Red Bull KTM Ajo sets fastest time on first day of the Red Bull Grand Prix of Spain. Bo Bendsneyder makes improvements in the second session and places seventeenth in the combined timesheet.

The return of the Moto3 World Championship to Europe begin well for Brad Binder, the fastest rider in the two Free Practice sessions on Friday for the Red Bull Grand Prix of Spain. The Red Bull KTM Ajo man set his best lap in the second session, going round in 1:47.119. His teammate, Bo Bendsneyder, who this week rides at a familiar circuit for the first time, completed the day in seventeenth place.

Favourable track conditions and fine weather at the Jere Circuit allowed the riders in the Moto3 class to go fast from the outset. Binder was the first to take the initiative, and was fifth at the end of the opening practice with a top lap of 1:47.839, focusing on work with used tyres. Bendsneyder did not feel comfortable in the initial 40 minutes, finishing twenty-fifth with a best time of 1:49.792.

The start of the second session was not easy for Binder, due to a mechanical problem that slowed his progress. After a long spell in the garage, he got back on-track and was able to push hard, clocking a 1:47.119 lap that was the fastest of the day. Red Bull KTM Ajo rookie Bendsneyder only needed eight laps to improve on his previous best lap, and continued to shave tenths off his times until setting a 1:48.360 on his penultimate attempt. The Dutchman was sixteenth in the FP2.

Saturday sees qualifying take place for the Red Bull Grand Prix of Spain, from 12:20pm local time. Binder will be aiming for a spot on the grid that allows him to fight for victory, whilst Bendsneyder has aspirations of further Grand Prix points.

Results (Combined practice time FP1-FP2)
1. Brad Binder ( Red Bull KTM Ajo) 1:47.119
2. Jorge Navarro (Honda) 1:47.241 +0.122
3. Nicolo Bulega (KTM) 1:47.400 +0.281
4. Romano Fenati (KTM) 1:47.473 +0.354
5. Niccolo Antonelli (Honda) 1:47.489 +0.370
17. Bo Bendsneyder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 1:48.360 +1.241

41 BRAD BINDER

“Today went well. This morning things weren’t easy, because were saving our tyres for tomorrow and did long runs with very worn tyres, and that was difficult. In the second practice we had some problems at the beginning, but I returned to the garage, went back out on track and all was well again. Luckily we were able to fix the problem and finish the day well. The plan for tomorrow is to continue to accumulate laps with race tyres, because this afternoon we did not put in as many as we would have liked. The only normal laps I did today were the last four or five, but I feel good and I think we can take another step forward tomorrow.”

64 BO BENDSNEYDER

“It’s good to be riding at a track that I know, so in the first session we were able to work immediately on the setup of the bike -but I lacked a bit of confidence. Upon completing the session, we found things to improve by reviewing the data we had collected and I improved a lot following that. In the second run we continued to work hard and set a good lap time, but we still have room for improvement in terms of our pace. Tomorrow we will continue working hard on this and I hope to take a step forward in qualifying to get among the Top 15.”

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