Brad Binder tops Day One at Sachsenring
Brad Binder has finished the first day of practice at Sachsenring in Germany at the top of the timesheets aboard his Red Bull KTM Moto2 machine. This result comes on the back of his first podium finish for the year at Assen after a mostly uncompetitive year for KTM in the Moto2 class.
The first practice in the morning was slow going for Binder when he finished just 15th in the timesheets as the team got on with working through the different settings. During the afternoon session, the team made a huge break-through, putting the South African fastest for the day.
“The day went pretty well, we were first in FP2 and that’s always positive. However, we have to keep pushing, as we still need to improve on certain points. I feel comfortable riding with new tyres but, when they wear out, the sensations are different. Anyway, I’m very happy because the team worked hard and found several solutions that allow us to better understand the behaviour of the bike. If we keep focused, I’m sure we can play our part well this weekend.”
Last year, Binder took his first win in the Moto2 class at the Sachsenring and showed good form there on a Moto3 bike before that. The big step the team has made is on new tyres that previously caused the KTM to run wide in corners. Before, Binder relied on some wear in the rear tyre, that way he could make the bike slide both in and out of corners thereby assisting with rear wheel steering. The better pace on new tyres means that the team has worked out how to offer better grip on the front tyre, stopping it from being pushed by the rear tyre mid-corner.
The big challenge now for the team is making the bike last the race. As we saw at Assen, the KTM tends to develop a chatter when the tyres get too worn. Binder commented after Assen that the last third of the race was challenging as the bike was chattering badly.
On Saturday, there is one more morning practice before qualifying in the afternoon.
Sachsenring Moto2 Friday combined practice times (FP1 – FP2)
1. Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 1:23.948
2. Xavi Vierge (Kalex) 1:24.328 +0.380
3. Iker Lecuona (KTM) 1:24.328 +0.380
4. Jonas Folger (Kalex) 1:24.354 +0.406
5. Marcel Schrotter (Kalex) 1:24.361 +0.413