WSS Qatar: Champion makes solid early start

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Michael van der Mark (Pata Honda) ended his first day under floodlights at Losail with the fastest practice time of all, a 2’02.206. This was already under the lap record pace, if not quite at track best so far.

After a great wildcard showing at Magny-Cours one-off rider Lucas Mahias had a great ride to second place at Losail, although almost half a second flower than van der Mark. This weekend he rides in the same DMC Panavto Yamaha squad that Kev Coghlan competes for regularly, but Coghlan ended his first day in 13th place from 23 riders.

To the surprise of some Roberto Tamburini (San Carlo Puccetti Kawasaki) slotted in third fastest of all, with his more illustrious team-mate Kenan Sofuoglu sixth.

The Moto2 experience of Ratthapark Wilairot (Core PTR Honda) helped put him fourth after two sessions, while Lorenzo Zanetti (Pata Honda) was fifth.

Normally rapid Jules Cluzel (MV Agusta Reparto Corse) placed seventh, just ahead of his team-mate Massimo Roccoli, and 0.854 seconds from leader van der Mark.

Jack Kennedy (CIA Insurance Honda) was tenth, Mason Law (Kawasaki Intermoto Ponyexpres) 16th.

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Gordon Ritchie

By Gordon Ritchie