Jason O’Halloran seared the Silverstone Tarmac this afternoon as he dominated the second Bennetts British Superbike free practice and lapped well under record pace.
The McAMS Yamaha man led his team-mate by almost 0.3s and went 0.334s under the existing lap record as he secured Friday bragging rights.
Riders scrambled for the top spots in the opening laps as the sun continued to beat down on the National circuit and while Be Wiser Ducati’s Scott Redding hit the top spot early on with his first flying lap, it was soon all change.
O’Halloran, Josh Brookes, Danny Buchan, Tarran Mackenzie and Luke Mossey all upset the top six before Redding flew back up to the front with a 54.400, but free practice one runner-up Josh Elliott continued to impress.
The OMG Suzuki rider slotted in just behind second-placed O’Halloran, but former European Superstock 1000 champ Claudio Corti rocketed forward almost a full tenth clear of Redding to take over the top spot for Team WD40 Kawasaki.
The Italian’s reign was short-lived, however, as Scotsman Mackenzie clocked a 54.282s lap and hit the top of the timesheets. And after a lull in action, O’Halloran overtook his team-mate as he dipped under the lap record with a 54.072.
Tyco BMW’s reigning Superstock 1000 champ Keith Farmer ran off at Brooklands just as Oxford Racing’s Tommy Bridewell became the first casualty of the weekend, going down at the same corner with just over 15 minutes to go.
With seven minutes remaining, Santander TAG Racing’s Dan Linfoot split the McAMS boys to take over second, but a mad shuffle followed as the clock dipped under the three minute mark.
Redding rejoined the fight to climb back into the top five, but Mossey and Iddon soon eclipsed him before Mackenzie beat them both and flew back up into second place, just 0.002s behind O’Halloran.
But the Aussie destroyed the field just seconds before the chequered flag waved as he scorched to a 53.775s lap, three tenths clear of Mackenzie and Mossey.
Brookes ended the session fourth ahead of Christian Iddon, who made a late charge to complete the top five ahead of Linfoot and Redding.
Corti, Elliot and Farmer rounded out the top 10.