Oliveira and Binder take on challenge of different conditions at Austrian GP


Red Bull KTM Ajo Moto2 riders participate in two Free Practice sessions with contrasting weather conditions on Friday. Miguel Oliveira ends the day sixteenth, followed by Brad Binder in seventeenth.


The home Grand Prix for the Red Bull KTM Ajo team began with a day affected by changeable weather conditions, during which the Moto2 riders had to contend with heavy rain in FP2. However, both Miguel Oliveira and Brad Binder ended the day satisfied with their work, finishing sixteenth and seventeenth, respectively, on the combined timesheets.

The plan for the first session of the weekend for the Red Bull KTM Ajo riders consisted of them making just one stop, to put on new tyres. FP1 started with an unforeseen incident for the South African, however, who escaped unharmed from a crash at Turn 4 on 13 minutes and had to return to the garage. Binder went back out on track afterwards and lowered his best time to 1:30.964 -for seventeenth. Just ahead of him -in sixteenth- Miguel Oliveira put in 23 laps and was only 4 tenths of the fastest rider of the day with his 1:30.920.

In the afternoon, the Red Bull KTM Ajo pair rode on a completely wet track, with rain falling consistently during the 45 minute session. The conditions caused several crashes amongst the Moto2 field. Neither Binder nor Oliveira wanted to take excessive risks and ran only two short stints for a total of nine laps. Binder was twenty-second -1:45.403- and Oliveira, thirtieth -1:48.141.

Tomorrow both riders will try to confirm the step forward made in qualifying at the recent Czech GP. The fight for pole position will start at 3:05pm local time.


Results (Combined practice times FP1-FP2)
1. Francesco Bagnaia (Kalex) 1:30.441
2. Lorenzo Baldassarri (Kalex) 1:30.504 +0.063
3. Marcel Schrotter (Kalex) 1:30.522 +0.081
4. Alex Marquez (Kalex) 1:30.568 +0.127
5. Fabio Quartararo (Speed Up) 1:30.568 +0.127
16. Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 1:30.920 +0.479
17. Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 1:30.964 +0.523


“The idea for this Friday was to follow the same strategy that we started to follow in Brno, preparing well for qualifying, but the weather didn’t let us carry it out. In the morning things went quite well and we were very close to the top time, only 0.4 off. I know there are small aspects of my riding that I have to improve for tomorrow. We had hoped to continue working in the afternoon, but the weather wasn’t on our side. In addition, when I went out on track it was when the surface was at its wettest -both times- and I couldn’t improve my times much. I hope that tomorrow and on Sunday the weather is more favourable, as the forecasts suggest, and that we will be able to continue working using our initial plan.”

“In general it has been a good day, I had a good feeling and, although there are still things that we have to change for tomorrow, I can’t wait to keep riding.
In the morning we felt very good from the beginning, going fast from the opening laps, although unfortunately I suffered a light crash on the eighth lap. I lost a lot of time, so I went back to the garage to get the bike ready to go out again. I could only do another 8 laps with the soft tyre.
I felt comfortable in the wet in FP2, even though in general those conditions are not easy for me. I didn’t try anything risky, but overall I’m happy enough that if it rains, I know I can do a good job.”