MILLER EMERGES FASTEST MOTO3 RIDER AT FINAL JEREZ TEST!
With less than a fortnight to the opening Moto3 GP in Qatar, it was a good week of tests for the Red Bull KTM Ajo Factory Team with newcomer Jack Miller of Australia topping the combined time sheets after nine sessions on the Jerez circuit in Spain.
Riding the KTM RC 250 GP bike, Jack Miller clocked 1:46.259 in the third session on Wednesday, day two of the three-day tests.
Miller after day three: "It was a good day. Once again we tested more parts for the bike, and once again they have given us very good results. We are confident that we are working in the right way to develop the bike throughout the year. I'm very eager to see how it evolves. We were fortunate enough to get some fairly decent times: One early in the morning and one in the afternoon. I made a small mistake when I was trying to lower my times, but I think this is also ok. We were consistent with our race simulation times, so I feel strong for Qatar."
Rookie teammate Karel Hanika was also in good form, finishing third overall in a highly competitive field with the fastest 18 riders were all within a second of the winning time, an indication that the 2014 season will be highly contested and very close. Hanika of the Czech Republic won his place in the team after winning the 2013 Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup, the competition that grooms young riders for a potential career in MotoGP.
Other fast KTM riders in the Spanish circuit this week were Czech Jakub Kornfeil at fourth fastest, Isaac Viñales of Spain at eighth and Italy’s Romano Fenati at ninth.
Red Bull KTM Ajo team boss Aki Ajo said it had been a very busy but good test period and while there were some problems with the wind on day one, the weather had also generally cooperated. "What is most important is that we feel we have made a big step with the development of the bike”, he said. “We are very thankful for the work that KTM did during the winter and together with us on the track. We feel we have improved a lot."
The factory team now gets to translate what has been a busy period of testing into race action on March 23 in the night race in Qatar when their riders will open their account in the 2014 Moto3 World Championship.
Results Moto3 IRTA Test Jerez (SPA)
1. Jack Miller (AUS), KTM, 1:46.259 min
2. Alex Márquez (ESP), Honda, 1:46.359
3. Karel Hanika (CZE), KTM, 1:46. 381
4. Jakub Kornfeil (CZE), KTM, 1:46.388
5. Efren Vázquez (ESP), Honda, 1:46.392
8. Isaac Viñales (ESP), KTM, 1:46.551
9. Romano Fenati (ITA), KTM, 1:46.592
13. Juanfran Guevara (ESP), KALEX-KTM, 1:46.982
14. Niccolo Antonelli (ITA), KTM, 1:46.840
15. Philipp Öttl (GER), KALEX-KTM, 1:46.967