Lavilla steals provisional pole

Published: 02 September 2003

Gregorio Lavilla has taken the provisional pole position for Assen World Superbikes beating Chris Walker to the top spot by just over a tenth of a second after the session was red flagged.

The first qualifying session was stopped when a Dutch wild-card rider crashed with just three minutes to go. When the session was restarted it turned in to a virtual superpole session with just enough time left for riders to complete one flying lap.

Neil Hodgson was the first rider out bettering all his previous times with 2:02.834 but Lavilla took his Alstare Suzuki to a 2:02.603 lap, bettering his morning practice time by nearly two seconds and taking the provisional pole from Hodgson.

HM Plant Ducati’s Chris Walker sat right behind Lavilla for the whole lap to follow him past Hodgson and in to second place.

PSG-1 Ducati rider Frankie Chili fills the last place on the provisional front row with Ruben Xaus, Ivan Clementi, Regis Laconi and James Toseland finishing the top eight. Toseland deciding not to go back out for the restarted session.

The top eight riders finishing within a second of each other.

British wild-card riders Leon Haslam on the Renegade Ducati and John Reynolds on the Rizla Suzuki are holding their own in 9th and 10th with Haslam finishing on 2:04.077 and Reynolds just behind on 2:04.547.

Lavilla’s team-mate Vittorio Ianuzzo crashed out in both session and was taken to the local hospital with concussion so will not be racing on Sunday.

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