BARRIER ON PROVISIONAL POLE POSITION!
Great result for Sylvain with the best time in Superstock 1000, despite a little crash at the end of the session.
In the first free practice session, Sylvain Barrier was the second quickest behind the 2010 FIM Cup Superstock 1000 winner Ayrton Badovini. Randy Pagaud was 17th.
In the afternoon qualifying practice session, Barrier did 4 very fast laps: 1'42.046, 1'41.697, 1'41.761 and 1'42.248, to be compared to the fastest ever lap set by Maxime Berger last year in 1'41.650! Everything was fine when suddenly there was a contact with Daniele Beretta. Both riders crashed without getting really hurt, but Barrier's BMW was destroyed. The good news is that he still is in provisional pole position.
Randy Pagaud had some trouble in the pits when a change of wheel took too much time. But there is still the second timed session on Saturday to improve his time.
Michel Garnier (team owner): "The mechanics had made a good bike. The set up was perfect. This is our first time in provisional pole position this year. In the last lap, Beretta hit Sylvain from behind and they both crashed. Sylvain was stuck under the bike but he is now OK. The bike is destroyed, with a broken frame. We have to make another motorcycle ready. This means a lot of work. I hope we can keep this pole position. This would be a nice reward for everybody in the team. I am disappointed, but I know that sooner or later we will succeed. Randy missed his session because there were some difficulties in changing the rear wheel. With 3 minutes to go, he was really fast but the red flag didn't allow him to finish that quick lap."
Sylvain Barrier: "We changed a few things on the bike this morning and the result was positive. This afternoon, I did the same times but it was easier. When we put some new tyres, I could do very fast lap times. We still have to work on the set up because the bike is difficult to ride with used tyres. Beretta ran into me at Adelaide and the bike fell on my knee. I shall be OK tomorrow."
Randy Pagaud: "This morning, the bike was tuned with the good Imola set up. I was not very much at ease, not relaxed, but I still managed to do a 1'46.2. It was a good session. This afternoon, I was immediately one tenth of a second faster. When I stopped in the pits to change tyres, it took a lot of time. Then I was again one tenth of a second quicker, but in my fast lap there was a red flag and it was the end of the session. I had good sensations."