Miguel Oliveira concludes Friday inside Top 5 at start of Australian GP


Red Bull KTM Ajo sets the fourth fastest time on Friday after undertaking his opening laps of Phillip Island with a Moto2 bike. Brad Binder, in fifteenth, also draws positive conclusions from day one.


The Red Bull KTM Ajo Moto2 riders went from the heavy rain of Japan to the cold and windy conditions of the Australian GP this Friday. On their first day of action with a Moto2 bike at Phillip Island, both Miguel Oliveira and Brad Binder found a good feeling after the first two Free Practice sessions. The Portuguese set the fourth best lap, thanks to his time in FP1, while the South African improved in FP2 to conclude the day in fifteenth.

FP1 was used by both Oliveira and Binder to undertake their first laps with a Moto2 bike at the Australian circuit. The duo put in the maximum amount of track time possible, making a single stop in the pits and completing 24 and 25 laps, respectively. Oliveira again showed his ease in adapting in new tracks, going third fastest with a 1:34.119 lap and putting in a strong pace. Binder, in 16th -1:34.781-, also took a positive first step at Phillip Island.

The Red Bull KTM Ajo pair have started the afternoon session strongly. In conditions similar to those they had experienced in the morning, both were in the Top 10 during the first ten minutes. In fact, the best lap for Oliveira was set in that early spell: A 1:34.335 for sixth place. Binder was able to set his personal best time of the day in the session with a 1:34.638.

After taking pole position last year in Moto3, Brad Binder and teammate Miguel Oliveira will battle for the best grid position possible tomorrow at 4:05pm local time -7:05am CET.


Results (Combined practice times FP1-FP2)
1. Takaaki Nakagami (Kalex) 1:33.310
2. Mattia Pasini (Kalex) 1:34.986 +0.676
3. Dominique Aergerter (Suter) 1:34.020 +0.710
4. Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 1:34.119 +0.809
5. Franco Morbidelli (Kalex) 1:34.206 +0.896
15. Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 1:34.638 +1.328


“It’s been a good Friday -I think the best since the second half of the season began. I really enjoyed riding at Phillip Island with a Moto2 bike. I have enjoyed the fast corners much more now with a bigger bike, because the speed is greater. At the end of the day it was very windy, very cold and if you made a mistake you felt the tyres cooling immediately. It’s been a good day and we’ve worked well. Tomorrow we will be ready to continue working hard.”

“It was a positive first day here at Phillip Island. In the second session there was a lot more wind than in the morning and we tried out different tyre compounds, because we still aren’t sure about which tyres to use. It seems that the softer rubber isn’t very good for us, so we will try to improve for tomorrow if the weather is favourable. However, overall we can say that it has been a positive Friday.”