Saturday, May 15


XEROX Ducati rider Michel Fabrizio headed the first qualifying session for round six of the HANNspree Superbike World Championship at South Africa's Kyalami circuit on May 14, lapping the 4.246km circuit near Johannesburg under his own lap record.

To underscore the intensity of competition in Superbike World Championship racing in 2010, all seven participating manufacturers were represented in the top 11 places, all within 0.859 seconds of each other.

Fabrizio led the charge, with a best time of 1m 38.477s on race tyres.

Behind Fabrizio, Cal Crutchlow on with the Yamaha Sterilgarda YZY-R1 was second fatest (1:38.529), with Jonathan Rea's Hannspree Ten Kate Honda third (1:38.687) and Troy Corser's BMW Motorrad Motorsport fourth fastest, with a best lap of 1:38.896.

Championship points leader Leon Haslam (Suzuki Alstare) was fifth (1:38.951), with privateer Althea Ducati rider Carlos Checa sixth. All the top six set lap times under the 1m 39s mark.

Seventh was the Pata B&G Ducati of Jakub Smrz, with the top eight rounded out by recent Monza race winner, Max Biaggi (Aprilia Alitalia). Privateers Shane Byrne (Althea Ducati) and Luca Scassa (Supersonic Ducati) were the final riders into the top ten places on the opening day.

Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team) was 11th fastest, top Kawasaki rider in the 22-strong pack, one place ahead of Biaggi's team-mate Leon Camier.

Some legendary Superbike names had a tough first day, with Noriyuki Haga only 13th, Ruben Xaus 14th and James Toseland still hurt from his big Monza crash, 15th.

Local wild card rider Sheridan Morais (EmTek Aprilia) was a creditable 16th, only 1.3seconds from pole at his local track, while the top 18 riders were covered by only 1.547 seconds.

For the full first qualifying session times, click here: