Top 10 for Miguel Oliveira and Brad Binder in Le Mans20/05/2018
Miguel Oliveira takes sixth position at the French GP and lies second in the overall standings. Brad Binder places ninth in his first Moto2 race at Le Mans.
The Red Bull KTM Ajo riders finished their most difficult weekend of the season so far with respective Top 10 finishes at Le Mans. Miguel Olivera took a sixth place at the French GP that allows him to climb to second position in the overall standings. Brad Binder finished ninth, picking up his third consecutive Top 10.
Starting from the third and fourth rows of the grid, the Red Bull KTM Ajo duo both made spectacular starts, completing the opening lap in fourth and fifth position. From there, several overtaking moves occurred between the two and other riders. Oliveira was sixth on the seventh lap, after passing his teammate. Despite giving up the position momentarily, the Portuguese moved back into sixth with six laps remaining and fought for fifth place until the final lap.
Binder remained in the Top 5 until the fourth lap. The South African would lose ground due to an incident from another rider, and in the middle of the race he was one of a group of three riders in the fight for eighth place, eventually completing the 25-lap contest in ninth.
After five races, Miguel Oliveira moves up a place to second in the overall standings with 73 points. Brad Binder has 37 points to his name and is ninth. Both will be in action on June 3rd for the next Grand Prix at Mugello, Italy, following a day of testing.
1. Francesco Bagnaia (Kalex) 40:40.162
2. Alex Marquez (Kalex) +2.709
3. Joan Mir (Kalex) +4.865
4. Marcel Schrotter (Kalex) +7.041
5. Xavi Vierge (Kalex) +9.811
6. Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM Ajo) +9.943
9. Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) +15.429
Moto2 World Championship Standing 2018
1. Francesco Bagnaia (Kalex) 98 points
2. Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 73 points
3. Alex Marquez (Kalex) 67 points
4. Lorenzo Baldassarri (Kalex) 64 points
5. Mattia Pasini (Kalex) 58 points
9. Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 37 points
AKI AJO – TEAM MANAGER
“We have to be happy with today’s results, because both of our riders were able to finish in the Top 10. The start of the weekend was very difficult, as was Saturday morning. I’m happy with the progress we have made throughout these past three days, since last year we had difficulties here with Miguel [Oliveira]; Brad [Binder] was out injured. We have improved and we haven’t surrendered at any time. Making improvement during the race weekend is the most important thing. We leave here with more points, we are second in both the rider standings, with Miguel, and in the team standings. Next week we will have a day of testing and we’ll have another after the race at Mugello, so the next three weeks are very important for us. I am very sure that we can fight for victories again.”
44 MIGUEL OLIVEIRA
“I am satisfied with our sixth position because we have improved compared to last year and we are also second in the overall standings, which is important. The problem for us was that at the beginning of the race the other riders had more grip and could go faster than us, whilst we lacked speed. At the end I was able to ride as fast as lead riders, but it was too late by then. Even so, we are lacking something and we are struggling a little, so we need something more. Luckily the team are working hard.
Now we have a test before Mugello that I’m sure will be good for us; both for me personally and for the bike too, as we look to take a step forward. Le Mans was the most difficult circuit we had marked on the calendar, so it’s already done with and we’re going to go for a good result at Mugello.”
41 BRAD BINDER
“It’s been a very difficult weekend, right from the beginning. Even so, I feel that I rode well in the race; I gave 100% from start to finish. I was unlucky with Baldassari’s crash, because he was right in front of me and I lost a lot of time deciding where to go, as he was going in one direction and his bike was going in the other. We have to keep working hard to take a step forward from where we are now. We have a test next week, and I want to work hard and find something that improves what we have now, because I feel we can give more.”