Jonathan Rea kicked off his Magny Cours race weekend in style by topping the time sheets in the opening free practice session.
Onboard the Ten Kate Honda, Rea was the only man to dip under the 1m40s bracket finishing the hour long session 0.229s ahead of Stiggy Honda rider Leon Haslam.
Championship leader Noriyuki Haga claimed third ahead of Carlos Checa in fourth and surprise front runner Fonsi Nieto in fifth onboard his DFX Ducati.
Ben Spies took just six laps to set the fastest time earlier in the session, but dropped to seventh at the finish behind Imola race winner Michel Fabrizio.
Shane Byrne, also riding at the track for the first time climbed up to tenth by the end of the session, with Tom Sykes in 12th and Leon Camier 17th onboard the Aprilia RSV4.
The top 14 places were covered by less than one second.
1 65 J. REA GBR HANNspree Ten Kate Honda Honda CBR1000RR 1'39.984
2 91 L. HASLAM GBR Stiggy Racing Honda Honda CBR1000RR 1'40.213
3 41 N. HAGA JPN Ducati Xerox Team Ducati 1098R 1'40.222
4 7 C. CHECA ESP HANNspree Ten Kate Honda Honda CBR1000RR 1'40.243
5 10 F. NIETO ESP DFX Corse Ducati 1098R 1'40.279
6 84 M. FABRIZIO ITA Ducati Xerox Team Ducati 1098R 1'40.369
7 19 B. SPIES USA Yamaha WSB Yamaha YZF R1 1'40.
8 3 M. BIAGGI ITA Aprilia Racing Aprilia RSV4 Factory 1'40.701
9 11 T. CORSER AUS BMW Motorrad Motorsport BMW S1000 RR 1'40.736
10 67 S. BYRNE GBR Sterilgarda Ducati 1098R 1'40.802
11 9 R. KIYONARI JPN Ten Kate Honda Racing Honda CBR1000RR 1'40.803
12 66 T. SYKES GBR Yamaha WSB Yamaha YZF R1 1'40.867
13 71 Y. KAGAYAMA JPN Suzuki Alstare BRUX Suzuki GSX-R 1000 K9 1'40.875
14 96 J. SMRZ CZE Guandalini Racing Ducati 1098R 1'40.893
15 31 K. MUGGERIDGE AUS Suzuki Alstare BRUX Suzuki GSX-R 1000 K9 1'41.022
16 25 D. SALOM ESP Team Pedercini Kawasaki ZX 10R 1'41.376
17 22 L. CAMIER GBR Aprilia Racing Aprilia RSV4 Factory 1'41.428
18 23 B. PARKES AUS Kawasaki World Superbike R.T. Kawasaki ZX 10R 1'41.713
19 94 D. CHECA ESP Yamaha France GMT 94 Ipone Yamaha YZF R1 1'41.871
20 15 M. BAIOCCO ITA Guandalini Racing Ducati 1098R 1'41.891
21 111 R. XAUS ESP BMW Motorrad Motorsport BMW S1000 RR 1'41.939
22 99 L. SCASSA ITA Team Pedercini Kawasaki ZX 10R 1'41.949
23 132 S. MORAIS RSA Kawasaki World Superbike R.T. Kawasaki ZX 10R 1'43.098
24 77 V. IANNUZZO ITA Squadra Corse Italia Honda CBR1000RR 1'43.480
25 88 R. RESCH AUT TKR Suzuki Switzerland Suzuki GSX-R 1000 K9 1'43.589
26 40 F. GENTILE ITA Honda Althea Racing Honda CBR1000RR 1'43.843