Red Bull KTM Ajo Moto2 pair start Thailand Grand Prix in top form04/10/2019
Brad Binder and Jorge Martin are in the provisional Q2 positions, after two solid free practice sessions.
As the final stretch of the 2019 Moto2 World Championship commenced with the Thailand Grand Prix at the Buriram International Circuit on Friday, the Red Bull KTM Ajo Moto2 riders had a promising first day. Both of them provisionally made it into Q2, with Friday’s practice times given extra significance due to the forecast of rain for FP3 on Saturday morning. In addition, Brad Binder and Jorge Martin both reduced their times from FP1 in FP2.
The light rain which fell at the beginning of FP1 would not hinder Brad Binder, as he moved to the top of the timesheets early. The South African consistently improved his times, with his final lap being his personal best of the morning – 1:36.606 – as he finished the free practice in eighth place. On the other side of the box, Jorge Martin quickly adapted to the Thai track on his first appearance there in Moto2, taking a noticeable step forward from the beginning to the end of the session. The Spaniard concluded in 10th with a 1:36.642.
In the afternoon, the Red Bull KTM Ajo duo were on the pace again, with both of them lapping faster than in FP1. The South African finished FP2 in seventh position, with a personal best of 1:36.113 set on his last lap of 20, putting him less than two tenths off the top spot. His teammate, meanwhile, concluded the session in 12th – 1:36.269 -, clocking four tenths quicker than in the morning. The pair therefore ended the day in provisional Q2 spots, with Binder eighth and Martin 12th on the combined timesheets.
Tomorrow, the Red Bull KTM Ajo Moto2 riders will have one last free practice before qualifying, which will start at 3:05 pm (Q1) and 3:30 pm (Q2) local time.
Combined practice times (FP1 – FP2)
1. Luca Marini (Kalex) 1:35.956
2. Somkiat Chantra (Kalex) 1:35.964 +0.008
3. Tetsuta Nagashima (Kalex) 1:35.969 +0.013
4. Remy Gardner (Kalex) 1:36.005 +0.049
5. Alex Marquez (Kalex) 1:36.033 +0.077
8. Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 1:36.113 +0.157
12. Jorge Martin (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 1:36.269 +0.313
41 BRAD BINDER
“Today was a pretty good day for us. This morning it took a little longer to find the right feeling, but in the afternoon we took a big step forward and I’m very happy about that. We have a good pace and I feel satisfied. However, the final result is not what we hoped for, besides we had some problems when switching to the new tyres which complicated things. There are a couple of points that we have to improve for the qualifying and if we get those right we can go even faster. I am very motivated for tomorrow and we’ll see how far we can go.”
88 JORGE MARTIN
“I’m happy with how the first day went. This morning, when we put on the softer tyre, I started to feel comfortable and, in the afternoon, I tried a shock absorber that gave me much better grip. After those changes my feeling improved and I was able to produce competitive times whilst riding alone. We have the potential for the Top 10 however, if we can take another step forward, I think it’s realistic to even aim for the Top 5.”