Leon Camier qualified for Superpole, but his accident meant he didn't get to participate. This left only fifteen riders to participate in the proceedings, with Camier qualifying in 16th. Top riders would therefore be able to save both their qualifying tyres for the second and third sessions.
In the first Superpole session, Tom Sykes asserted his authority, taking top spot with Eugene Laverty in second place. Jules Cluzel was able to grab third from Chaz Davies by using a qualifying tyre, and Carlos Checa very nearly didn't make it through to the second session, languishing in the cut-off twelfth place. Lundh's Kawasaki caught fire, as he was on pace to potentially take 12th off Checa, and was unceremoniously dumped at the side of the track to be attacked by marshals with fire extinguishers.
Superpole two brought qualifying tyres. Eugene Laverty put in a blistering 1'56.631 ahead of Loris Baz who borrowed the clean air Chaz Davies dragged about behind him to get second. Davies and Sykes were in fourth and fifth ahead of Jonathan Rea while Carlos Checa spent his second qualifying tyre to try to survive relegation as the last five men went back out for a second bite. Leon Haslam, Carlos Checa and Max Neukirchner were knocked out though, with Melandri just scraping through while Davide Giugliano was the man to benefit from the second run, creeping up to fifth place by spending his last qualifier.
The faster men of the remaining nine riders still had qualifying tyres left over for the last Superpole session. Eugene Laverty and Chaz Davies both put in impressive 1'56 laps, but Tom Sykes crossed the line a few seconds later with a 1'56.339 record-setting lap.
The front row reflects the weekend's qualifying with Tom Sykes ahead of Eugene Laverty and Chaz Davies, in the old joke order of an Englishman, an Irishman and a Welshman. The second row is an entirely French affair, with Sylvain Guintoli ahead of Jules Cluzel and Loris Baz while Marco Melandri and Jonathan Rea both suffered in the last session and will be at the back of the third row, behind Davide Giugliano.
Aragon - FIM Superbike World Championship - Superpole 3
1. Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team) Kawasaki ZX-10R 1'56.339
2. Eugene Laverty (Aprilia Racing Team) Aprilia RSV4 Factory 1'56.638
3. Chaz Davies (BMW Motorrad GoldBet SBK) BMW S1000 RR 1'56.845
4. Sylvain Guintoli (Aprilia Racing Team) Aprilia RSV4 Factory 1'57.486
5. Jules Cluzel (Fixi Crescent Suzuki) Suzuki GSX-R1000 1'57.540
6. Loris Baz (Kawasaki Racing Team) Kawasaki ZX-10R 1'57.869
7. Davide Giugliano (Althea Racing) Aprilia RSV4 Factory 1'57.975
8. Marco Melandri (BMW Motorrad GoldBet SBK) BMW S1000 RR 1'58.268
9. Jonathan Rea (Pata Honda World Superbike) Honda CBR1000RR 2'01.613
-- Superpole 2 --
10. Carlos Checa (Team Ducati Alstare) Ducati 1199 Panigale R 1'58.326
11. Leon Haslam (Pata Honda World Superbike) Honda CBR1000RR 1'58.329
12. Max Neukirchner (MR-Racing) Ducati 1199 Panigale R 1'59.993
-- Superpole 3 --
13. Ayrton Badovini (Team Ducati Alstare) Ducati 1199 Panigale R 1'59.475
14. Michel Fabrizio (Red Devils Roma) Aprilia RSV4 Factory 1'59.478
15. Alexander Lundh (Team Pedercini) Kawasaki ZX-10R 2'01.029
-- Qualifying --
16. Leon Camier (Fixi Crescent Suzuki) Suzuki GSX-R1000 1'59.379
17. Federico Sandi (Team Pedercini) Kawasaki ZX-10R 2'00.979
18. Ivan Clementi (HTM Racing) BMW S1000 RR 2'02.140
19. Mark Aitchison (Team Effenbert Liberty Racing) Ducati 1098R 2'02.554
20. Vittorio Iannuzzo (Grillini Dentalmatic SBK) BMW S1000 RR 2'03.201
Looks like it's coming down to Laverty, Davies and Sykes
My money would be on Davies or Laverty over race distance but I wouldn't mind seeing Sykes prove me wrong.
In reply to Looks like it's coming down to Laverty, Davies and Sykes by Sir_Bedevere
The weekend's performances over time support your hypothesis.
I still put my money on him but I would be happy to see Marco more upfront.
In reply to Laverty by briga
You may well get your wish. I
You may well get your wish. I think some of the fun of the races is going to be watching Melandri slash past slower riders in the early laps.
I wonder how many he'll take
I wonder how many he'll take out?? Heard Checa is complaining about handling problems with the panigale?? Still think if you put a 1000 4cyl engine in the duke like the other wsbk's then it would display the same handling problems as the motogp bike, The huge twin gives the bike totally different characteristics which enables it to mask it's handling frailties... If this carries on ducati are gonna have to have a big rethink...