Kawasaki’s Tom Sykes secured pole position, smashing the lap record with an outstanding Superpole lap, while championship rival Max Biaggi struggled finishing an unexpected 10th. Sykes took his ninth pole position of the season, setting the new circuit best lap with a 1.36.950.
Factory Aprilia rider Biaggi failed to make Superpole three, unable to link a hot lap together in Superpole two with a best time of 1.38.095 and will start tomorrow’s race from the third row. Biaggi’s team mate, Eugene Laverty will join Sykes on the front row; qualifying third behind Ducati mounted Carlos Checa.
Laverty admitted he was surprised to qualify on the front row, he said: “I didn’t think we had the pace for the front row, we’ve only just been in the top ten all weekend, so was thinking second row, I’m really happy with a front row start for tomorrow”.
Brits Jonathan Rea, Leon Haslam and Chaz Davis secure second row starts, finishing sixth, seventh and an impressive eighth for Chaz who is lacking track time due to mechanical issues on Friday and a crash this morning.
Crescent Suzuki’s Leon Camier starts on row three in ninth position alongside title leader Max Biaggi in tenth.
Championship contender Marco Melandri looked back to best after his recent dip in form, qualifying on the front row for Sunday’s two races.
Magny-Cours - FIM Superbike World Championship - Superpole 3
1. Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team) Kawasaki ZX-10R 1'36.950
2. Carlos Checa (Althea Racing) Ducati 1098R 1'37.422
3. Eugene Laverty (Aprilia Racing Team) Aprilia RSV4 Factory 1'37.516
4. Marco Melandri (BMW Motorrad Motorsport) BMW S1000 RR 1'37.658
5. Sylvain Guintoli (PATA Racing Team) Ducati 1098R 1'37.901
6. Jonathan Rea (Honda World Superbike Team) Honda CBR1000RR 1'38.252
7. Leon Haslam (BMW Motorrad Motorsport) BMW S1000 RR 1'38.280
8. Chaz Davies (ParkinGO MTC Racing) Aprilia RSV4 Factory 1'38.425
9. Leon Camier (FIXI Crescent Suzuki) Suzuki GSX-R1000 1'38.072
10. Max Biaggi (Aprilia Racing Team) Aprilia RSV4 Factory 1'38.095
11. Michel Fabrizio (BMW Motorrad Italia GoldBet) BMW S1000 RR 1'38.318
12. Claudio Corti (Team Pedercini) Kawasaki ZX-10R 1'38.516
13. Loris Baz (Kawasaki Racing Team) Kawasaki ZX-10R 1'38.548
14. Maxime Berger (Red Devils Roma) Ducati 1098R 1'38.727
15. Davide Giugliano (Althea Racing) Ducati 1098R 1'38.807
16. Lorenzo Zanetti (PATA Racing Team) Ducati 1098R 1'39.354
17. Ayrton Badovini (BMW Motorrad Italia GoldBet) BMW S1000 RR 1'39.430
18. Hiroshi Aoyama (Honda World Superbike Team) Honda CBR1000RR 1'39.750
19. John Hopkins (FIXI Crescent Suzuki) Suzuki GSX-R1000 1'40.538
20. Alexander Lundh (Team Pedercini) Kawasaki ZX-10R 1'40.882
21. Norino Brignola (Grillini Progea Superbike Team) BMW S1000 RR 1'42.461