Monza opening day belongs to Cal Crutchlow (Yamaha Sterilgarda)
The opening day of action at the Autodromo di Monza belonged to Britain's Cal Crutchlow (Yamaha Sterilgarda), who confirmed his excellent qualifying form this year with provisional pole position, after topping the timesheets also in the morning's free practice run. The World Supersport champion set a time of 1 minute 44.577 seconds to go two-tenths faster than Assen double winner Jonathan Rea (Hannspree Ten Kate Honda), while third quickest time went to Michel Fabrizio on the Ducati Xerox 1098, who looked to be in fine form after his recent Misano test.
The BMW Motorrad team continued to make headway in qualifying with first Ruben Xaus and then Troy Corser both lying at the top of the timesheets for a while. In the end the Australian set the fourth time, ahead of points leader Leon Haslam (Suzuki Alstare) . Max Biaggi (Aprilia Alitalia), who had set an astonishing record top speed of close to 327 km/h in FP1, finished seventh, while Jakub Smrz with the PATA client Ducati ended up in eighth. The last two top 10 positions went to James Toseland (Yamaha Sterilgarda) in ninth and Luca Scassa (Sueprsonic Ducati), who on the damp track had been as high as third.
Yoshimura WSB debut rider Daisaku Sakai had a tough baptism with the Monza track, earning himself a provisional nineteenth place together with a morning and an afternoon crash.
A fantastic lap of 1 minute 48.303 seconds by Ireland's Eugene Laverty (Parkalgar Honda) was enough to knock Triumph BE1 Racing's David Salom off the top slot in the last few minutes of qualifying at Monza. The Spanish rider has been looking competitive all day however and he was able to place his Triumph 675 machine in front of the Kawasakis of Joan Lascorz (Motocard.com) and Fabien Foret (Lorenzini). The third major championship contender Kenan Sofuoglu (Hannspree Ten Kate Honda) was next up in fifth ahead of his Italian team-mate Michele Pirro.
Ayrton Badovini (BMW) continues to lay down the law in Superstock 1000, as he notched up the quickest time in qualifying. The Italian was unable to get under the two-minute mark on the damp track, but he did end up over half-a-second quicker than Austrian Rene Mahr (Suzuki). Third quickest was Andrea Antonelli (Honda). Davide Giugliano could only manage seventeenth quickest time as he was still in pain from a crash in the morning's free practice session.
Federico D'Annunzio (Yamaha Martini Corse) set the quickest time of 1 minute 52.232 seconds in the first qualifying session for the European Superstock 600 race. The young Italian was more than four-tenths quicker than one of the title chasers, Frenchman Florian Marino (Honda Ten Kate). Two Italian wild-cards, Riccardo Russo (Bike & Motor Yamaha) and Stefano Casalotti (Media Action Yamaha) showed good form as they notched up fifth and sixth quickest times respectively.