Rookie Scott Redding took his first Tissot Superpole pole position following an exciting battle with Jonathan Rea and Tom Sykes
The first Tissot Superpole session of the restarted MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship was full of close action under the scorching sun at the Circuito de Jerez – Angel Nieto. It was a battle for pole position for the Pirelli Spanish Round as Scott Redding (ARUBA.IT Racing – Ducati) claimed pole position by just 0.034s in a tense Superpole session, with Championship leader Alex Lowes (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) down in 14th place.
Redding held out a challenge from five-time Champion Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki WorldSBK Official Team), who put in a last-ditch effort to move into second place. The Northern Irishman had started a final lap and looked to be going faster but backed off halfway around the lap allowing Redding to celebrate his first WorldSBK pole position. With Tom Sykes (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) falling just short of a 51st pole position in WorldSBK, he will start third as British riders lock out the front row – the first time any nationality has locked out the front row of the grid at Jerez.
Toprak Razgatlioglu (PATA YAMAHA WorldSBK Official Team) set the pace in the early stages of the Tissot Superpole session, immediately posting lap times in the low 1’39s; showing the one-lap pace of his Yamaha machine, Yamaha teammate Michael van der Mark also showing pace by running in the top three in the first part of the session. The pair will start fourth and fifth on the grid with Friday pace-setter Loris Baz (Ten Kate Racing Yamaha) in sixth; an all Yamaha second row in Jerez.
Redding’s Ducati teammate, Chaz Davies, was seventh with Honda duo Alvaro Bautista (Team HRC) and teammate Leon Haslam eighth and ninth. Bautista had been as high as fourth throughout the Tissot Superpole session but fell down the order as the times got quicker at the end of the session; riders using the qualifying tyres as the session came to a close. Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Team GOELEVEN), who had been fastest in yesterday’s Free Practice 2, qualified in 10th.
Lowes (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) was unable to set a lap time in the first phase of the Tissot Superpole session following a crash at Turn 13, but the Championship leader was able to return to the track with 15 minutes left of the 25-minute session; losing only around 10 minutes of track time in the all-important Superpole session. Leandro ‘Tati’ Mercado (Motocorsa Racing) also had a crash during Superpole where he came off his Ducati at Turn 4.
The top six following Tissot Superpole, full results here:
1.) Scott Redding (ARUBA.IT Racing – Ducati) 1’38.736
2.) Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) +0.034
3.) Tom Sykes (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) +0.040
4.) Michael van der Mark (PATA YAMAHA WorldSBK Official Team) +0.262
5.) Toprak Razgatlioglu (PATA YAMAHA WorldSBK Official Team) +0.472
6.) Loris Baz (Ten Kate Racing Yamaha) +0.478
You can follow all racing from the Pirelli Spanish Round using the WorldSBK VideoPass!