Championship leader Tommy Hill will start the opening MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship race of the weekend at Cadwell Park from pole position after leading the way in qualifying.

The Worx Crescent Suzuki rider produced a storming lap of 1min 27.774secs in the 'Roll for Pole' to take top spot from Josh Brookes by more than three-tenths of a second.

Michael Rutter and Ryuichi Kiyonari complete the front row of the grid although Kiyonari was more than half a second slower than Hill.

"I am happy to be on pole," Hill told the official BSB website. "It is always the goal but to be honest we have struggled a bit this weekend and everyone is so fast I knew it would be tough. We have changed the forks over several times and then went back to basics but now we are up here and that is the main thing.

"We needed to be here though as it is so close between the top guys that anything less would have made life tough for race one."

Michael Laverty had set the pace in the final free practice session but had to settle for fifth on the grid ahead of the impressive Tommy Bridewell in sixth place on the Quay Garage Honda.

Stuart Easton, Chris Walker, John Laverty and Gary Mason completed the top ten, although the latter was unable to take part in Q3 after falling at Charlies in Q2.

The second phase of qualifying proved to be troublesome for a number of riders, with Steve Brogan suffering technical problems on his Evo class Jentin BMW and Alastair Seeley joining Mason in falling at Charlies - although he was able to get back on his bike and continue.

With Brogan's issues, Evo class honours went to South African rider Hudson Kennaugh, who was 17th quickest on his MAR Kawasaki ahead of Chris Burns and Brogan.