Second position for Rueda and Zurutuza makes good improvements in Austin


The Red Bull KTM Ajo Moto3 rider finishes in the Top 3 on great Friday, while Xabi Zurutuza is 22nd.

The Grand Prix of the Americas started this Friday with the first practice sessions of the weekend. Jose Antonio Rueda once again showed great pace from the get-go, occupying a place in the Top 3 in the two sessions held and finishing the day in second position. Xabi Zurutuza made his debut in the class and improved his times during the afternoon, concluding in 22nd position.

The Circuit of the Americas offered a great setting for the third round of the season. The track conditions in Free Practice allowed the Red Bull KTM Ajo duo to go from strength to strength and make the most of the session to adapt to the demanding venue. Rueda occupied the top positions for much of the session and, after completing 12 laps, on the last attempt he achieved his best time of 2:16.760, which placed him in third. Zurutuza was finally able to debut this Friday as a Red Bull KTM Ajo rider. The Spaniard focused on understanding the bike well, getting a good feeling and adapting to a circuit previously unknown to him. Zurutuza would improve his times, finishing in 22nd thanks to a 2:18.947 on his last lap.

In the afternoon session the Moto3 duo focused on continuing to fine-tune the setup for their bikes and managing the new tyres for the qualifying and race to come. Rueda was very consistent from start to finish, lowering his times by more than a second compared to the previous session. The Spaniard clocked the second best time of the day thanks to his 2:15.330. Zurutuza also took a big step forward in every sense. The Red Bull KTM Ajo rookie faced Practice 1 with a lot of motivation and focused on gaining confidence on the North American circuit, something that was reflected in his pace. Zurutuza finished in 22nd with a time of 2:16.953, 2 seconds faster than he was in Free Practice.

On Saturday the qualifying sessions for the Grand Prix of the Americas will be held, beginning at 12:50 pm local time.


Results Practice 1
1. David Alonso (CFMoto) 2:15.173
2. Jose Antonio Rueda (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 2:15.330 +0.157
3. Angel Piqueras (Honda) 2:15.490 +0.317
4. Daniel Holgado (GasGas) 2:15.567 +0.394
5. Ivan Ortola (KTM) 2:15.606 +0.433
22. Xabi Zurutuza (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 2:16.953 +1.780


“The bike was good and I’m feeling really good riding it. We worked well with the team today and I think we have found a good setup for the weekend. My objective for tomorrow is to get onto the first or second row, which are the best ones in this class, but we will try to go for the top positions. I am optimistic for tomorrow’s qualifying but anything can happen, so we are working to get the best result possible.”


“Today I made my debut in the first Grand Prix of my career and I am really very happy. Making my debut here, at a circuit like Austin, is spectacular. It has been a day for going step by step, in which I ended up quite satisfied. Apart from the result, I am very happy because we have been closing the gap to the leader and we have improved our times a lot. Tomorrow we will try to look for a clean lap, continue working the same and little by little face the GP in the best way.”