Parkes and Foret earn front row starts A tense final qualifying session held under the warm Australian sun ended with both Fabien Foret and Broc Parkes able to start tomorrow's 21-lap World Supersport Championship race from the front row. Each...
Parkes and Foret earn front row starts
A tense final qualifying session held under the warm Australian sun ended with both Fabien Foret and Broc Parkes able to start tomorrow's 21-lap World Supersport Championship race from the front row. Each rider had to push hard in the latter stages to set their best time of the weekend, with the Yamaha World Supersport Team's combined efforts putting both its riders on the front row for the first time this season.
Foret and Parkes each found a lack of grip from the 4.445km Phillip Island track surface, despite having had a highly positive test in the winter months on their all-new Yamaha YZF-R6 machines.
Parkes will start from the third position on the 36-rider grid on Sunday after setting a time of 1'35.059, with Foret on the final front row grid spot, thanks to a 1'35.195. Fast and consistent lap times did not come easily for either rider, as each worked his way through a wide variety of set-up options in search of an ideal match with their potential race tyres.
David Salom (Yamaha Spain World Supersport Team) had another strong qualifying experience, going 11th on the grid and earning a third row start. Massimo Roccoli improved on his first day lap time by over a second and promoted himself to 14th on the grid, for a fourth row start.
Broc Parkes (3rd - 1'35.089 - Yamaha World Supersport Team)
"That was a bit of a mixed session and it took a while to get going. I hoped it would be easier than it turned out to be but we had a few more problems than expected. We had some grip problems and we have been struggling a bit with that all weekend. We have some ideas for the warm-up in the morning, but we were too late today to try them out in the final qualifying. Our grip concerns were mainly mid corner, from the rear. We didn't try too many soft tyres because we were looking for a good race set-up. Front row for me is good, better than Qatar, and the race is always different from qualifying. There will be a lot of guys in with a chance tomorrow."
Fabien Foret(4th - 1'35.185 - Yamaha World Supersport Team)
"Our winter test here was not really exceptional but it was pretty good. However, from the start of this weekend it has been hard to find enough rear grip. I tried many different set-ups, on fresh and used tyres, but there's not much difference. Because of that we couldn't really chase the pole time, we needed more grip to do that sort of lap time. Because we had to try so many set-ups today we could not do a lot of long distance runs. So we will see how the weather is tomorrow before we make a tyre choice."
Wilco Zeelenberg - Team Manager, Yamaha World Supersport Team
"We need to improve our set up a bit for the race. Our lap times are not so bad, both riders are on the front row, but they say that there is not so much grip from the track. It is difficult to find more grip and keep the steering characteristics we need, but those are our aims in warm-up tomorrow. Neither of our potential race tyres is working as well as we hoped. We tried both tyres at the test in January and both were good for grip and life, but not now. So we have to find a way to get more life out of them."
David Salom - (11th - 1'35.730 - Yamaha Spain World Supersport Team)
"We made up time on yesterday all around the track, not just at one or two points, but this afternoon was hard because of the heat and the wind. There was a bit of rear spin this afternoon as well. I think we have chosen a race tyre but only if the temperature stays the same way as today. We will use warm-up to try a couple of things, just to be sure."
Massimo Roccoli - (14th - 1'36.135 - Yamaha Team Italia Lorenzini by Leoni)
"I used medium compound tyres most of the time, to help me go round the last two high speed corners. That is the most difficult part of the circuit for me so I wanted to be safe there. I will make final set-up changes in morning warm-up, and choose the race tyre then."