Ten Kate dominate front row.
Four bikes on the provisional front row of the World Supersport race at Assen this weekend feature Ten Kate tuned engines.
On the pole position is young Chris Vermeulen on the Van Zon Honda TKR CBR600FS, his lap time of only 2m 06.077 raised a few eyebrows around the paddock. It was almost two seconds quicker than MacPherson's fastest lap in free practice this morning.
"Chris Vermeulen's lap times are incredible," said Ten Kate rider and championship leader Honda Fabien Foret "it's almost as if he's missing a corner out somewhere!"
Foret was almost eight tenths of a second behind Vermeulen in second spot. With rain forecast for Saturday these Friday times may well turn out to be the final qualifying times. "The bike is going well, the Pirelli tyres are excellent and the WP Suspension guys have worked hard on the set up." explained Foret. "If it rains on Saturday then we can use that to sort out a wet set up, then wet or dry on Sunday we'll have a set up whatever the weather."
Third on the grid was Iain MacPherson on the other Ten Kate Honda. "I feel I could have gone a bit faster," said Iain, "But I got caught up in traffic." Although he's riding with a broken thumb MacPherson doesn't think it's effecting his riding much, "It hurts most when I take my gloves on and off!" quipped the Scot.
Team Manager Ronald ten Kate was pleased with the first day of work at Assen, "It's very satisfying to see every bike on the front row has been tuned by us! I'm really pleased for young Chris, he's really got them talking with that lap time" said ten Kate. "Although we tested here earlier in the year we still had a few things to iron out so I'm very happy that all the riders have managed to get up to speed so quickly. Now if it rains on Saturday we have our grid positions guaranteed.
Friday's World Supersport qualifying times:
1 Chris Vermeulen, Australia (Van Zon Honda TKR) 2m 06.077s,
2 Fabien Foret, France (Ten Kate Honda) 2m 06.857s,
3 Iain MacPherson, GB (Ten Kate Honda) 2m 07.021s,
4 Jan Hanson, Sweden (Honda) 2m 07.668s,
5 Christophe Cogan, France (Honda) 2m 07.858s,
6 Stephane Chambon, France (Suzuki) 2m 07.957s,
7 Jorg Teuchert, Germany (Yamaha) 2m 07.988s,
8 Karl Muggeridge, Australia (Honda) 2m 08.004s,
9 Katsuaki Fujiwara, Japan (Suzuki) 2m 08.030s,
10 Christian Kellner, Germany (Yamaha) 2m 08.113s.