Avant Tecno KTM rider begins Malaysian GP sixteenth quickest, on a day affected by rainfall before second session.
Eager to return to recover a good feeling with his bike, Niklas Ajo rose this morning determined to work hard at the Sepang Circuit. After setting the sixteenth fastest time of the first session, the Avant Tecno KTM rider —like the rest of the Moto3 field— was set back by rain in the second run which prevented an improvement in lap times.
Niklas Ajo came out strong in the first practice session of the weekend, clocking his two best laps on his first stint. On the last lap of his first go out on track, the Avant Tecno KTM rider set his fastest time with a lap of 2:16.701. After his only visit to the garage, changes made to his setup did not yield the expected results, thus preventing him from going quicker.
Between sessions in the lower cylinder category, the Sepang Circuit experienced a typical shower which soaked the asphalt. Niklas went out with cut slicks, but was able to go to full slicks with 10 minutes remaining before the end of the session. He set his best time on his last attempt, putting down a 2:17.682 lap which placed him eleventh.
The young Finn will tomorrow try to better the sixth row on the grid achieved at last year’s Malaysian Grand Prix.
Results (Combined practice time FP1-FP2)
1. Maverick Viñales (KTM) 2:14.961
2. Alexis Masbou (FTR Honda) 2:15.062 +0.101
3. Jack Miller (FTR Honda) 2:15.087 +0.126
4. Alex Rins (KTM) 2:15.282 +0.321
5. Efren Vazquez (Mahindra) 2:15.478 +0.517
16. Niklas Ajo (Avant Tecno KTM) 2:16.701 +1.740
Audio (English) // Audio (Finnish)
”Today didn’t go too badly. Obviously the weather played a big part in things, leaving the asphalt wet for the afternoon session. In the morning we took things calmly and went step-by-step, finding a better feeling as we went along.
In the second session I felt comfortable with the wet tyres. This track drains out very quickly and I like to ride in these types of conditions and with these tyres. I was able to put in two laps with slicks and that also went well, giving me a good time. We need to be calm tomorrow, continue in the same way and look to progress.”
*Audio solely for radio use