Brands Hatch: Series Friday notes

Japanese trio hit the front in Superbike first qualifying at Brands Hatch A trio of Japanese riders hit the front in the first qualifying session for round 10 of the HANNspree FIM Superbike World Championship at Brands Hatch, with two-times...

Japanese trio hit the front in Superbike first qualifying at Brands Hatch

A trio of Japanese riders hit the front in the first qualifying session for round 10 of the HANNspree FIM Superbike World Championship at Brands Hatch, with two-times British Superbike champion Ryuichi Kiyonari clocking a time of 1 minute 26.017 seconds to take provisional pole.

The Hannspree Ten Kate Honda man, who also won the Suzuka 8 Hours a few days ago, was just a fraction ahead of his fellow countryman Noriyuki Haga (Yamaha Motor Italia WSB), second quickest today despite a late trip into the gravel. Suzuki Alstare's Yukio Kagayama set a similar time to Haga to grab the third slot, while Italian Max Biaggi (Sterilgarda Go Eleven Ducati) was a further fraction of a second behind to complete the provisional front row.

Czech Republic's Jakub Smrz (Guandalini Ducati) was in front of another former BSB champion, Gregorio Lavilla (VentAxia VK Honda) in sixth, with the two Australians, Troy Corser (Yamaha Motor Italia WSB) and Karl Muggeridge (DFX Honda) seventh and eighth.

Tom Sykes (Rizla Suzuki) looked impressive in his wild-card ride and was up amongst the front-runners for much of the session before ending in ninth place, ahead of the factory Suzuki Alstare machine of Fonsi Nieto in tenth and the Ducati Xerox pairing of Michel Fabrizio and Troy Bayliss, in eleventh and twelfth. Max Neukirchner (Alstare Suzuki) and Carlos Checa (Hannspree Ten Kate Honda), a Brands Hatch rookie, were both inside the top 16, who were all separated by just 1".

FIM Supersport World Championship

British riders were up at the front in first Supersport qualifying as the Hannspree Ten Kate Honda and Parkalgar Racing young hotshots Jonathan Rea and Craig Jones took the top two positions. Brno winner Rea was quickest with a new record lap time of 1 minute 28.117 seconds, with Jones two tenths behind. Third quickest was Broc Parkes (Yamaha World Supersport), while Frenchman Matthieu Lagrive (Intermoto Czech Honda) completed the front row. Italian Massimo Roccoli (Yamaha Lorenzini by Leoni) was a positive fifth quickest on the track where he finished third last year. Fabien Foret's replacement in the Yamaha World Supersport team, Karl Harris, set the seventh quickest time, three places ahead of championship leader Andrew Pitt (Hannspree Ten Kate Honda).

Superstock 1000 FIM Cup

Frenchman Maxime Berger (Hannspree IDS Ten Kate Honda) dominated the first qualifying session for the Superstock 1000 Cup, setting a time of 1 minute 29.315 seconds, just a fraction off Corti's record time from last year. Berger was close to improving on the record in the final stages when he crashed out. Claudio Corti (Yamaha Motor Italia Junior Team), who set second quickest time, also crashed out today, bruising his shoulder in the process. Michele Pirro (Yamaha Lorenzini by Leoni) had a good run for third, while points leader Brendan Roberts (Ducati Xerox Junior Team) also had a crash but finished fourth. Title challenger Xavier Simeon (Alstare Suzuki) was down in eleventh place, well over a second slower than Berger.

European 600 Superstock Championship

In European 600 Superstock qualifying, the battle continues to rage between Loris Baz (Yamaha YZF Junior Team) and Patrick Vostarek (Intermoto Czech Honda). Quickest time around the Kent circuit went to points leader Baz, who was two tenths ahead of his Czech rival. Britain's Gino Rea (StoneBaker Yamaha) was also close to the top 2 in third place, while Eddi La Marra (Cruciani Moto Suzuki) was the first Italian in fourth.

-credit: worldsbk.com

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Series World Superbike
Drivers Max Biaggi , Carlos Checa , Andrew Pitt , Broc Parkes , Gregorio Lavilla , Fonsi Nieto , Troy Corser , Fabien Foret , Yukio Kagayama , Craig Jones , Karl Muggeridge , Michel Fabrizio , Tom Sykes , Jakub Smrz , Max Neukirchner , Karl Harris , Jonathan Rea , Xavier Simeon , Claudio Corti , Massimo Roccoli , Ryuichi Kiyonari , Maxime Berger , Brendan Roberts , Michele Pirro , Loris Baz , Gino Rea