An impressive last gasp lap by Loris Baz sees him and Motorpoint Yamaha head into the first British Superbike qualifying session of the 2011 season clutching the initiative.

The Frenchman, making his full-time BSB debut this weekend, has made steady improvements over the weekend, his final effort of 45.530secs during third free practice proving enough to demote Ryuichi Kiyonari.

A big boost to Motorpoint Yamaha, Baz was a tenth faster than the reigning champion and quicker than the Yamaha UK-backed Swan machine of Michael Laverty in third position.

John Hopkins maintained his top five presence in fourth place aboard the Samsung Crescent Suzuki, ahead of Shane Byrne and his team-mate Jon Kirkham.

Tommy Hill, who heads into qualifying still clutching the fastest lap of the weekend thus far, was seventh quickest, ahead of Josh Brookes, Tommy Bridewell and Michael Rutter.

With qualifying remaining, the leading positions are destined to be closely fought - just one second covered the top 23 riders in FP3.

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