A flurry of quick lap times at the end of today’s qualifying session for Sunday’s two World Superbike races at the Silverstone circuit in England saw lots of movement – but it turned out to be a battle for second as no one could knock Sterilgarda Yamaha’s Cal Crutchlow from the top spot, a position he held for most of the session.Initially it was Ducati Xerox’s Noriyuki Haga at the top, but that was short-lived as he would slide down the order to an eventual 12th. Crutchlow went to the top with his 2:06.300 fairly early and he stayed there, improving to a 2:05.664 with less than 20 minutes to go to make sure he would finish at the top.Then came the flurry of ridings trying to move forward and it led to a heated exchange right at the very end with Hannspree Ten Kate Honda’s Jonathan Rea getting the closest to Crutchlow with his 2:06.006.Rea’s quick lap knocked BMW’s Troy Corser back to third, the Australian doing well in his comeback race after his big crash in practice at the last round in the Czech Republic. Corser’s best also came late – a 2:06.052 – just .388 behind Crutchlow.The provisional front row was filled by Aprilia’s Leon Camier, the third Brit in the top four on a day that saw six Brits in the top 10 at their home round.Fifth place fell to Ducati Xerox’s Michel Fabrizio, the Italian one of several to hold down second in the session. Fabrizio topped Sterilgarda Yamaha’s James Toseland with Toseland also taking a shot at Crutchlow before fading back at the end of the session.World Championship points leader Max Biaggi ended up seventh after a rough session, the Italian and his Aprilia mired back in 19th with 20 minutes to go. Biaggi ended up on-upping his championship rival with Alstare Suzuki’s Leon Haslam dropping to eighth after also holding down second at one point.Althea Ducati’s Carlos Checa and Kawasaki’s Tom Sykes rounded out the top 10.Pedercini Kawasaki’s Roger Lee Hayden ended up 20th, the Kentuckian ripping off his best lap right at the end to get within 2.013 of Crutchlow.Four different manufacturers make up the provisional front row (Yamaha, Honda, BMW and Aprilia) and all seven (Yamaha, Honda, BMW, Aprilia, Ducati, Suzuki and Kawasaki) are in the top 10.
1. Cal Crutchlow (Yamaha) 2:05.664
2. Jonathan Rea (Honda) 2:06.006
3. Troy Corser (BMW) 2:06.052
4. Leon Camier (Aprilia) 2:06.064
5. Michel Fabrizio (Ducati) 2:06.088
6. James Toseland (Yamaha) 2:06.238
7. Max Biaggi (Aprilia) 2:06.315
8. Leon Haslam (Suzuki) 2:06.464
9. Carlos Checa (Ducati 2:06.596
10. Tom Sykes (Kawasaki) 2:06.596.