Tommy Hill’s Monster YART team will start from pole position at tomorrow’s prestigious Suzuka Eight-Hours after their star Japanese rider Kata Nakasuga blitzed them field with 2’06.845, an endurance lap record.
Reigning British Superbike Champion Hill was the fourth-quickest rider in the Superpole session, which is no mean feat on a track he has only ridden on twice and using unfamiliar Michelin tyres.
His team just edged ahead of another ex-BSB man, Ryuichi Kiyonari, who had been fastest on a 2’07.063 until Nakasuga gave Yamaha their first qualifying top spot in more than 12 years.
Leon Camier’s Yoshimura Suzuki team finished third and a little under three tenths behind Kiyonari while Jonathan Rea’s works FCC-TSR team are fourth quickest on a 2’08.077. Honda TT Legends start from 17th place after just missing out on Superpole in final qualifying. Jason O’Halloran was their fastest man.