Fourth row for Niklas Ajo after scare


Avant Tecno KTM rider finishes eleventh in qualifying for British Grand Prix, despite suffering a small crash.

Niklas Ajo will start from the fourth row of the grid at the eleventh round on the Moto3 calendar. The Avant Tecno KTM rider finished the second day of the British Grand Prix in eleventh, improving with every session. A slight fall in qualifying prevented the young Finn from improving on his 2:15.019 best lap.

In the final practice session of the weekend, Niklas Ajo again lowered his times from yesterday. The Avant Tecno KTM rider worked hard to find a good pace and took his best time of the session on his final run, clocking a 2:16.495 lap that was the eighteenth fastest.

This lap time was smashed within the first two laps of the qualifying session. Niklas Ajo came out strong in the run, putting in a best time of 2:15.019 on his second stint. Looking to make another hot lap, the Finn crashed on the last corner of his next time around –escaping uninjured– and was unable to improve his time. He qualified eleventh at Silverstone.

The Moto3 race tomorrow takes place at 14.30 local time. Last season, Niklas Ajo finished fourteenth.

Results (Qualifying practice)
1. Maverick Viñales (KTM) 2:13.507
2. Alex Rins (KTM) 2:13.699   +0.192
3. Luis Salom (KTM) 2:13.948   +0.441
4. Jack Miller (FTR Honda) 2:14.523   +1.016
5. Jonas Folger (Kalex KTM) 2:14.531   +1.024
11. Niklas Ajo (Avant Tecno KTM) 2:15.019   +1.512


Niklas Ajo >> Audio (English) // Audio (Finnish)
”The position we achieved today is not great, but I’m satisfied with how fast we were. I had a good feeling with the bike and was on for a very good lap, but I made a small mistake on the last corner and went down. When I got back on track, on almost all the laps I completed, there was too much traffic around and that cost me any chance of improving my times. However, we had a good pace. On my final stint we used the soft tyre to try for a hot lap, but as we didn’t get it right first time it dropped off progressively –giving us chatter and sliding out. Obviously we will not use that compound tomorrow. I am still feeling unwell, I can hardly breathe and I don’t feel strong on the bike, so I hope to rest today and do all we can tomorrow.”


*Audio solely for radio use