Binder shines under Aragon sun to end Friday third
Darryn Binder ends AragonGP opening day third; Syarifuddin Azman 24th in his first taste of Moto3
PETRONAS Sprinta Racing’s Darryn Binder ended the opening day of the Gran Premio de Aragon third, just 0.076secs shy of the top spot. Meanwhile, Syarifuddin Azman [Damok] was 24th on the first day of his Moto3 World Championship debut.
Binder started FP1 with a strong lap that placed him fifth, before settling into a steady rhythm. Putting in a 1min 59.507secs lap in the closing stages, he ended the morning sixth. The South African continued this form in FP2, momentarily holding the top spot early on and staying inside the top-four for the majority of the 40 minutes. Posting a 1min 59.005secs lap on his final run, Darryn ended the session, and the day, third – just 0.076secs shy of the top spot.
Damok didn’t have the most auspicious of starts to his first Moto3 Free Practice session, experiencing a Turn 14 crash early on. Able to return to the track in the final ten minutes, his best lap of 2mins 1.311secs placed him 25th. The Malaysian rider enjoyed a more consistent and productive FP2 session, making progress throughout the session. Continuing to reduce his lap time around the Aragon circuit, Damok ended the day 24th with a 2mins 0.485secs lap.
Tomorrow’s track action will begin with Binder and Damok’s FP3 session at 9am local time (3pm MYT), with the first of the two Moto3 Qualifying sessions getting underway at 12.35pm local time (6.35pm MYT).
“It was a good Friday. Unfortunately the track was a little bit slick this morning and I didn’t feel that comfortable at the beginning of FP1. In FP2 the track felt better and, for me, the grip had improved. Obviously it wasn’t a huge improvement because of the heat but I felt good.
At the end of the session there was quite a big group on track and, on my final lap, I had to fight my way through them to get a lap in. I still can’t complain though and I’m really happy with the result. I had good results here last year, so I’m looking to go one better than last year. We’ll see what happens Sunday though.” – Darryn Binder, 3rd (1’59.005)
“I was a little bit nervous before I got on the bike, because this is my first time in the Moto3 championship but a lot of people told me just to keep calm, so I took their advice. Unfortunately, I crashed on my second flying lap in FP1, which was really not good.
I had some pain in my left hand from this, but I tried to recover as best I could and do some more laps on track. FP2 was better than this morning because I was feeling better and I was more comfortable with the bike. I’m improving step by step and I’m ready to do the same again tomorrow. I’m looking forward to being out there again tomorrow.” – – Syarifuddin Azman, 24th (2’00.485)