2010 Phillip Island WSBK Superpole Results - New Faces On The Front Row

Results of the World Superbikes Superpole session, setting the grid for tomorrow's race at Phillip Island:

Leon Haslam took his first ever Superpole at Phillip Island, after squeezing out Ducati's Michel Fabrizio to take pole for Sunday's race. The Suzuki Alstare rider has been close to the front all weekend and strong at the tests a week ago, and Haslam finally made good on the promise he showed all last year.

Alongside Fabrizio is another newcomer, Cal Crutchlow rocketing to 3rd place and a front row start in his first World Superbike race. After a disastrous first day, the Yamaha engineers discarded the carbon fuel tank and tail section built for this season, replacing them with 2009 units. That switch has clearly paid off, as both Crutchlow and teammate James Toseland made it in to Superpole 3, and Toseland ended up 8th because he'd already been forced to use one of his two qualifying tires in the first Superpole session, leaving him to contest Superpole 3 on race tires.

Carlos Checa, who dominated practice on Saturday, could not capitalize during Superpole, though the Spanish veteran still starts from the front row. Sylvain Guintoli heads up the second row, directly behind his Alstare Suzuki teammate. Guintoli has another privateer Ducati beside him, in the shape of the Pata Ducati of Jakub Smrz. Johnny Rea will start from 7th, the Ulsterman still struggling to get the best out of grippy new tires. But Rea's aggressive style leaves no doubt that he'll be barging his way to the front during the race.

The big surprise of the session was the absence of two title contenders from Superpole 3. Max Biaggi is struggling with vibration both on corner entry and corner exit from the new tires that Pirelli have brought, and could only put his Aprilia into 11th place. Noriyuki Haga, the man who finished last year's championship in 2nd behind the phenomenon that is Ben Spies, went out on a race tire in Superpole 2 but could not put the time in he needed. The Xerox Ducati man missed the cut, and will have to start from 10th.

The weather, which was threatening to be very blustery and wet earlier in the week, appears to have cleared up, after a giant thunderstorm blew through the area overnight on Friday. Race day looks to be dry and not too hot, though the strong winds forecast will be a factor. But in just a few hours time, racing will be underway again at Phillip Island, and all will be right with the world.

Superpole results:

Pos. No. Rider Country Bike Time Diff Prev.
1 91 L. Haslam GBR Suzuki GSX-R1000 1'31.229 0.000  
2 84 M. Fabrizio ITA Ducati 1098R 1'31.245 0.016 0.016
3 35 C. Crutchlow GBR Yamaha YZF R1 1'31.642 0.413 0.397
4 7 C. Checa ESP Ducati 1098R 1'31.671 0.442 0.029
5 50 S. Guintoli FRA Suzuki GSX-R1000 1'31.696 0.467 0.025
6 96 J. Smrz CZE Ducati 1098R 1'31.757 0.528 0.061
7 65 J. Rea GBR Honda CBR1000RR 1'31.912 0.683 0.155
8 52 J. Toseland GBR Yamaha YZF R1 1'32.019 0.790 0.107
Out after Superpole 2
9 57 L. Lanzi ITA Ducati 1098R 1'32.205 0.976 0.186
10 41 N. Haga JPN Ducati 1098R 1'32.229 1.000 0.024
11 3 M. Biaggi ITA Aprilia RSV4 1000 F. 1'32.293 1.064 0.064
12 66 T. Sykes GBR Kawasaki ZX 10R 1'32.398 1.169 0.105
13 11 T. Corser AUS BMW S1000 RR 1'32.430 1.201 0.032
14 77 C. Vermeulen AUS Kawasaki ZX 10R 1'32.561 1.332 0.131
15 111 R. Xaus ESP BMW S1000 RR 1'32.842 1.613 0.281
16 2 L. Camier GBR Aprilia RSV4 1000 F. 1'32.895 1.666 0.053
Out after Superpole 1
17 76 M. Neukirchner GER Honda CBR1000RR 1'32.782 1.553 -0.113
18 67 S. Byrne GBR Ducati 1098R 1'32.823 1.594 0.041
19 88 A. Pitt AUS BMW S1000 RR 1'33.207 1.978 0.384
20 123 R. Resch AUT BMW S1000 RR 1'33.390 2.161 0.183
Did not qualify for Superpole
21 25 J. Brookes AUS Honda CBR1000RR 1'33.901 2.672 0.511
22 31 V. Iannuzzo ITA Honda CBR1000RR 1'34.248 3.019 0.347
23 15 M. Baiocco ITA Kawasaki ZX 10R 1'35.297 4.068 1.049
24 95 R. Hayden USA Kawasaki ZX 10R 1'35.614 4.385 0.317
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Right on Leon! Seems the new Suzuki agrees with the lad! My money is on Johnny Rea, Biaggi and Haga (not necessarily in that order) to move up rapidly though! Hopefully Roger Lee will come to grips with that Kawi soon as well!

I was thinking Rea , Checa, Haga , Haslam , Biaggi , Crutchlow .. My picks seem to be all over the map so far ,.