Reigning WorldSBK champ Jonathan Rea put all his wet weather skills and expertise to claim pole position at Magny-Cours this morning.
Rea was involved in a head-to-head with Yamaha’s Michael van der Mark on their last laps but a crash for Sylvain Barrier brought out the yellow flags in the final sector which put paid to last attempt.
Unexpected rains at the wrong time of day saw Superpole run in fully wet conditions, which proved to be no problem for Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team). His 1’53.955 took the top spot by just 0.014 seconds, from van der Mark (Yamaha WorldSBK Team).
Leon Haslam (Kawasaki Racing Team) was third quickest and joined the top two on the grid for the first race of the weekend.
Loris Baz (Ten Kate Racing Yamaha) was pushed from fourth place by Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Barni Racing Team Ducati). A late charge by Tom Sykes (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) saw him up to sixth, completing row two.
Alex Lowes (Pata Yamaha WorldSBK Team) placed seventh, with Eugene Laverty (Team GoEleven Ducati) eighth - and the surprise of Ryuichi Kiyonari (Moriwaki-Althea Honda Racing Team) ninth.
Returning rider Leon Camier (Moriwaki-Althea Honda Racing Team) was the final rider inside the top ten. Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) was 11th and his official Ducati team mate Alvaro Bautista (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) was 14th.
The delayed start to Superpole did not alter the schedule for the first WorldSBK race of the weekend, which will get underway at 2pm today.