Eighth place in Le Mans qualifying for Miguel Oliveira

 In Moto3, News


An unusual qualifying session decided the grid positions for the French Grand Prix, as early rainfall meant riders had only one or two attempts at a hot lap. Miguel Oliveira was the highest placing Red Bull KTM Ajo rider with eighth position, whilst Brad Binder had to settle for a spot on the ninth row. Karel Hanika, who has to start from pit lane for this Grand Prix, set the 24th quickest time.

Progressing steadily despite track temperatures of just 12°C, the Red Bull KTM Ajo riders went out this morning with a strong pace. During the first part of the final practice session, Hanika was up in the Top 5, whilst Oliveira climbed positions to get closer to the front. Preparing for qualifying, Oliveira and Hanika made an excellent last stint to close FP3 in 3rd and 7th place, respectively. A little further back, Brad Binder finished in twelfth place.

The qualifying session began with maximum caution shown. After just three minutes, light rain began to fall on Le Mans, throwing plans into disarray. With delicate track conditions, Binder suffered a light crash at Turn 12. Without wishing to take unnecessary risks, the riders then headed back to the pits to conclude the qualifying session. Thus, Miguel Oliveira will start from 8th position and Brad Binder from 25th. Karel Hanika, 24th in the qualifying session, will start tomorrow from pitlane after the sanction received at the Spanish GP.

The Moto3 race will be held tomorrow at 11:00am local time.

“To tell the truth, although I know that the conditions are the same for us all, not being able to ride is disappointing. This morning we had a good feeling with the bike and we had improved the setup; in the afternoon we wanted to confirm some of this work we had done, but we could not do so.
At Jerez I was not 100% but this morning I felt that I had a good pace. We did not use the soft tyre because we were going to save them for qualifying. In the end we have not fully confirmed everything we wanted, but starting from eighth with these conditions is not bad. It isn’t ideal, but we will try to have a smart race and try to take advantage of having very fast riders behind us to move forward.”

Source: Ajo

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