World supersport: West on the money
In world supersport (WorldSSP), the two timed practice sessions saw a slew of top guns on the pace, including Australia’s big hope Anthony West.
The Kawasaki-backed Queenslander was seventh overall, just over one second behind the pacesetting Yamaha of world champion Lucas Mahias.
Randy Krummenacher (Yamaha) was second, while German Sandro Cortese (Yamaha), the 2012 Moto3 world champion who has made an 11th hour switch to WorldSSP, was third ahead of Federico Caricasulo (Yamaha) and multiple world champion Kenan Sofuoglu (Kawasaki).
Local wildcard Tom Toparis (Kawasaki) was 17th, and New South Welshman Lachlan Epis (Kawasaki) 19th.
The Superpole battle for final grid positions will commence at 1:30pm tomorrow, ahead of Sunday’s 18-lap race.
ASBK: Waters tops ASBK qualifying, Bayliss lurking
Defending champion Josh Waters will begin the 2018 Australian Superbike Championship (ASBK) from pole position after a damp qualifier. He took his Suzuki to the top spot ahead of Wayne Maxwell (Yamaha) and Troy Bayliss (Ducati) – the 48-year-old continuing to make good on his return to road racing.
“I think that was my first ride in the rain in 10 years,” Bayliss quipped.
“It took a while to get a feel for the bike in the conditions but I eventually got comfortable. If you concentrate it’s actually physically easier on the body in the wet conditions. I’m in a great spot for tomorrow’s race and Sunday.”
Daniel Falzon (Yamaha), Troy Herfoss (Honda) and Michael Blair (Yamaha) took the next three qualifying spots.
A maximum grid of 40 riders will line up in race one for ASBK at 4:40pm tomorrow, followed by two more hitouts on Sunday.