Brad Binder has described his first outing around the Le Mans Bugatti circuit on a MotoGP bike as a ‘day to forget’ after struggling to find his balance in evolving conditions during free practice for the French MotoGP.

The Czech MotoGP race winner has seen the momentum from that spectacular maiden win stall in recent rounds, the South African freely admitting he sometimes takes time to build up his rhythm riding a new circuit before pushing on in the latter stages of the weekend.

Even so, he has ground to make up on Saturday morning after finishing FP1 and FP2 16th and 22nd respectively, Binder revealing his form was so bad in the afternoon that his team brought him into the box assuming he had a problem after repeated off-track moments in the damp.

His day would end prematurely shortly afterwards with a crash at Turn 7, Binder failing to set a representative lap time.

“Fantastic day today, to say the least,” Binder joked.

“This morning was quite OK, this afternoon I was happy to see it was drier but I went off track every lap for five or six laps, then I think my team thought there was something wrong so they put ‘box, box’ on my dashboard, so I pitted. 

“They asked ‘what’s wrong?’ but there was nothing wrong, just spending more time on the side of the track than on it. Went out of the pits, don’t know if I hit a wet patch but I crashed at Turn 7 on my first flying lap. First session I haven’t made a single lap count.

“The entries were really good but the biggest thing was the exit of the corners because I wasn’t sure how much throttle I could get because you’re going over square patches the whole time. That makes it more difficult to figure out where you can open the gaps but I think I went straight most laps.

“In the full wet it’s quite cool but when it’s patchy it is hard to when to commit to when you want to brake and when you want to turn. You know you can do it, but you’re not too sure if you go over these patches. You might just tuck, wobble and then you’ll be fine. Today is a day to forget and we start again tomorrow.”



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