Red Bull KTM Ajo take second consecutive one-two29/10/2017
Miguel Oliveira and Brad Binder finish first and second in Malaysia, repeating their positions from the Australian GP last weekend.
Red Bull KTM Ajo riders Miguel Oliveira and Brad Binder repeated their Moto2 one-two from the Australian GP at the penultimate round of the season in Malaysia, with Oliveira winning the race at Sepang. Amidst intense heat and with the complication of fine rainfall on the final laps, the pair held on for another remarkable result.
Miguel Oliveira’s race followed the same script as a week ago at Phillip Island. A great start allowed him to take the holeshot, and within two laps he had already established a lead of 1 second from the pursuing group. Oliveira gave his rivals no chance of catching him, setting new circuit records and upping his advantage to as much as 4 seconds. The Portuguese has managed to remain calm when the rain began, 4 laps from the end, and crossed the finish line with a 2 second lead.
Brad Binder had a more difficult race. From the start the South African was part of the chasing group, along with two other riders fighting for second position. As the laps went by, the South African stuck on the wheel of newly crowned World Champion Franco Morbidelli until he saw the flags indicating rain. Given the possibility of the race being cut short, Binder took a risk and passed the Italian for his second consecutive runner-up spot. Coincidentally, the Red Bull KTM Ajo riders both took this same result two years ago in Sepang, when part of the structure’s Moto3 team.
With this excellent end to the flyaway rounds, Miguel Oliveira has secured third position in the overall standings, with 216 points. Brad Binder continues climbing positions and is ninth with 109 points. The final race of the year will be take place on November 12th in Valencia.
Aki Ajo – Team Manager
“The Moto2 race was incredible. I don’t know what to say. I don’t think I can even believe it; it is much more than we could have imagined. We are already very motivated to do well in the future, but this result is an extra bonus. This is a long-term project to fight for the World Championship one day, and this is without a doubt the way forward. Again, I want to thank personally and on behalf of the team, the great partners who support us like Red Bull, KTM, and all the partners for letting us be part of this great project. I also want to thank the riders, Miguel [Oliveira] and Brad [Binder]. They are just incredible.”
1. Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 40:28.955
2. Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) +2.387
3. Franco Morbidelli (Kalex) +6.878
4. Mattia Pasini (Kalex) +21.774
5. Francesco Bagnaia (Kalex) +22.086
Moto2 World Championship Standing 2017
1. Franco Morbidelli (Kalex) 288 points
2. Thomas Luthi (Kalex) 243 points
3. Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 216 points
4. Alex Marquez (Kalex) 190 points
5. Francesco Bagnaia (Kalex) 161 points
9. Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 109 points
41 BRAD BINDER
“At first, during the opening three or four laps, I didn’t feel too comfortable. But little by little I felt stronger as the race progressed; my bike was amazing and I have to thank my team for that. When I saw that it was beginning to rain, I told myself that I had to give everything and get away from Franco [Morbidelli]. To finish second is incredible: I want to thank my team again for all the effort they’ve put in, and I’m looking forward to Valencia.”
44 MIGUEL OLIVEIRA
“Today I had to give everything, I can hardly speak. This was not the strategy I had in mind before we started, as Franco [Morbidelli] and Brad [Binder] had a very good pace, so my plan was to ride behind them. But I saw that I could give a little more on the first few laps and I went for it. I gave everything I had and I am very proud to have succeeded. At the beginning of the season I did not imagine that we would be able to achieve these results. I thought we would be competitive but not that we would do so well. We deserve this end to the season.”