Red Bull KTM Ajo team fastest on Friday at Sepang01/11/2019
Jorge Martin leads the combined FP1 and FP2 timesheets at the Malaysian Grand Prix, with Brad Binder in fourth place.
The penultimate weekend of the 2019 Moto2 World Championship could not have started more positively for the Red Bull KTM Ajo Moto2, as they topped the combined FP1 and FP2 timesheets, courtesy of Jorge Martin. The Spaniard was fastest on Friday, after leading the way in the afternoon practice and being the only rider capable of going under the 2:06 mark. For his part, Brad Binder ended in fourth place, making it a solid Top 5 for the team on the opening day of the Malaysian GP.
The South African had to work hard at the beginning of FP1 to find a good feeling at Sepang. His efforts would pay off in the last minutes of the session, as Binder took a big step forward: he was one of the few riders setting laps below 2:07. Finally, Brad ended second with a 2:06.410 time, being just one tenth off the top spot. On the other side of the box, Jorge Martin made a great start, immediately placing himself amongst the fastest riders. After some difficulties in the final part of the practice, the Spaniard was 16th – 2:07.477.
In the afternoon, the Red Bull KTM Ajo Moto2 pair were fast and consistent right from the beginning of FP2, producing Top 5 times. Jorge Martin was one of the most active riders in the final part of the session, setting two consecutive fast laps that earned him the top spot with a 2:05.968, as the only man to go under 2:06. His teammate, Brad Binder, finished fourth in the practice, thanks to the personal best he set on his 15th and last attempt – 2:06.457.
Courtesy of today’s results, both Red Bull KTM Ajo riders are provisionally placed to go straight into Q2, with FP3 still to come tomorrow morning. The Moto2 Q1 session on Saturday will start at 1:30 pm, followed by Q2 at 1:55 pm local time.
Combined practice times (FP1 – FP2)
1. Jorge Martin (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 2:05.968
2. Tetsuta Nagashima (Kalex) 2:06.197 +0.229
3. Alex Marquez (Kalex) 2:06.328 +0.360
4. Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 2:06.410 +0.442
5. Jorge Navarro (Speed Up) 2:06.503 +0.535
41 BRAD BINDER
“It was a good Friday. This morning we started strongly, although the track conditions were somewhat tricky, as you couldn’t tell if it was dry or not because there were a lot of wet patches. However, in general I’m happy with how it went. I felt good on the bike and I did my best lap on used tyres, which is a positive sign. At the end of the afternoon session, I put on new tyres and we changed something on the bike, but it didn’t turn out as we had hoped. Tomorrow we will try some other lines of work and I’m sure that we’ll find that something we are lacking.”
88 JORGE MARTIN
“It was a positive day. This morning was complicated, as we struggled with chattering again, but the team did a great job finding a way to solve the issue. We still have to keep working, as I’m close to the limit with the front. The important thing is that we are competitive and we have the pace we need in order to fight in the race on Sunday. The goal for tomorrow is to qualify on the front three rows, to give us a chance for the victory.”