James Toseland and HRC Honda team-mate Ryuichi Kiyonari will start the Suzuka Eight Hours tomorrow from fourth place tomorrow, after the action-packed Timed Attack and Jump-Up special stages today in Japan.
Pole was set by MotoGP star Carlos Checa, who rides alongside Suzuka two-time winner Tadayuki Okada on the other HRC Fireblade entry, in front of 41,000 fans.
The Timed Attack session allows one rider to set a time, with the top 10 then going forward to the Jump-Up stage which is similar to World Superbike's Superpole flying lap grid-spot session.
Kiyonari set a 2:09.2 lap, fourth in the session, which Toseland used as a springboard to set a 2:08.03 in his run, for fourth overall. There is no 'grid' as such, with riders performing a Le Mans-style running start from the far side of the track to bikes lined up next to pit wall.
Toseland said: "It is good to be in the top four, pole is not so important here because of the start. We have concentrated on getting a good balance on the bike for the race itself, so we are not worried that we aren't quickest, it's all about the race. We both came here to win, so that's what we are aiming for."
British Superbike Honda rider Leon Camier set 11th fastest on a Moriwaki Foreblade.
The top 10 were:
1. T Okada/C Checa (Honda)
2. N. Osaki/K. Nakasuga (Yamaha)
3. Y. Kagayama/K. Akiyoshi (Suzuki)
4. R Kiyonari/J. Toseland (Honda)
10. A.Watanabe/D.Sakai (Suzuki)