Red Bull KTM Tech3’s Deniz Öncü started the Grand Prix of Doha with great signs. In Free Practice one this afternoon, he was already nearly one second quicker than one week ago at the same time. While chasing a lap time, the young Turkish rider was unable to improve towards the end of FP2 while being in the mix of nearly the entire field. He eventually concluded Friday 1.3 seconds off the top.

In the meantime, Ayumu Sasaki was working on his feeling aboard the KTM in the first session of the second weekend at the Losail International Circuit and didn’t focus on his lap time. Waiting just a few seconds too long in order to catch a toe in FP2 tonight, the Japanese saw the chequered flag already at the end of his out lap, which means he ended up close to his teammate in the final standings of Friday.

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Deniz Öncü

Position: 25th

Time: 2:06.142

Laps: 22


“In the first session of this weekend, I started a bit better compared to FP1 last week. My feeling onboard the bike had already improved, which was quite obvious also in terms of lap time. But I still have to admit, that I am absolutely not happy about today, because unfortunately, this Friday didn’t end well for us. But we know, what we need to do, therefore we’ll try everything to make up for it in Qualifying one tomorrow.”

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Ayumu Sasaki

Position: 27th

Time: 2:06.253

Laps: 20


“We had a quite difficult day today. In FP1, we just tried to understand the bike again and were not chasing any times. It was very hot, so we went out with used tyres and I had the same feeling like last week, which was good. FP2 was the session, where you have to get your time, because in FP3 tomorrow it will be too hot to improve the overall position, so I was trying, but then I made a mistake and everybody was a little bit nervous. Finally, we couldn’t make a good lap.”

“Everybody was waiting, I was as well. We made a mistake again. It’s difficult to manage this situation in the Moto3 class. We have to fix this, although it’s not going to be easy. I just need to focus now and if I have any chance to improve in FP3 tomorrow, I will give my best. Otherwise, I will try to push hard in Q1 in order to make it to Q2.”

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