Darryn Binder’s 2018 season begins in Qatar14/03/2018
The Losail International Circuit kicks off the new Moto3 season with a race held in the afternoon -rather than at night.
This Sunday, the red lights will go out for the first time in 2018 to start the first race of the Moto3 World Championship season: The Qatar Grand Prix. For the twelfth year in a row, the Asian country hosts the MotoGP season opener. The Red Bull KTM Ajo team will be present at the event, with Darryn Binder their only rider in the class this year. After a preseason of hard work in Jerez and Valencia, the team arrive in Losail with the aim of putting into practice all the improvements made during the winter.
The South African will make his first race appearance for Red Bull KTM Ajo at the same place where he debuted in the World Championship. He thus starts his third season in Moto3 and joins the team looking to take a step forward and be among the fastest riders on the grid. Running the number 40 on his KTM, Binder is hoping to build on his preseason performance with his bike and team in Qatar.
In a change from the established tradition, the Moto3 race will be held at 4pm local time -2pm CET-, meaning it takes place in daylight after 10 years of night racing for the lower cylinder class. The Red Bull KTM Ajo team have a record of two victories and two further podiums at the Qatar GP.
Circuit information – Losail International Circuit
Length: 5.380 metres / 3.343 miles
Width: 12 metres
Left corners: 6
Right corners: 10
Longest straight: 1.068 metres / 0.664 miles
40 DARRYN BINDER
“I’m looking forward to Qatar. Testing has been somewhat tricky, but I can’t wait for the first Grand Prix of the year and to get back into the usual routine, with 40 minute practice sessions; You have to give your best in them. I like the circuit and I always liked riding at night. This year we start earlier and it will not be like that, but I’m also curious to see how the race will be in these conditions. Losail is the place where I debuted in the World Championship, so it will always be a special round. Last year I didn’t have my best weekend, but after some bad practices and a position very far back on the grid, I managed to turn it around on Sunday and ended up scoring points.”