Michael Rutter lapped under record pace to top the timesheets in the opening superstock qualifying at this year’s North West 200.
A 13-time winner at the Triangle circuit, Rutter set a time of 4’25.021 to lap the course with an average speed of 121.847mph on his Batham’s BMW, under Ian Hutchinson’s official lap record of 121.680mph.
Alastair Seeley continued to stamp his authority on the event with his third top two spot of the day in second place ahead of Ian Hutchinson on the Tyco BMW.
It was a strong session for Bavarian manufacturer BMW, with S1000RR mounted riders locking out the top seven spots.
Michael Dunlop took fourth on his MD Racing bike, ahead of Lee Johnston, Martin Jessopp and Gary Johnson.
Dean Harrison was the first non-BMW in eighth place on the Silicone Engineering Kawasaki with Horst Saiger and William Dunlop rounding out the top ten.
However, a number of riders, including Jeremy McWilliams, James Hillier and Pete Hickman, were unable to put qualifying laps in after a red flag drew the session to a premature close with a rider in need of medical attention.