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Tommy Hill has returned himself to the top of the MCE British Superbike Championship timesheets as the riders got their first taste of dry running ahead of this weekend's tripe-header.

With dismal conditions afflicting both free practice sessions on Friday, the riders enjoyed FP3 in dry, warm conditions ahead of this morning's qualifying session and this afternoon's first race.

Reigning champion Hill proved quickest on the Swan Yamaha after leaping to the front in the final minute, while Shane Byrne was another to leave his best until last as he ended up less than a tenth adrift in second position.

Long-time pace setter Alex Lowes had to settle for third quickest on the WFR Honda, edging out Josh Brookes, Noriyuki Haga, Ian Lowry and Jon Kirkham, the latter suffering a technical issue on the Samsung Honda towards the end of the session.

CBR1000RR counterparts Graeme Gowland and Michael Laverty followed in eighth and ninth, while Chris Walker rounded out the top ten on the Pr1mo Bournemouth Kawasaki.

Elsewhere, Peter Hickman continued to get acquainted with the Buildbase BMW as he ran top S1000RR rider Tommy Bridewell close in 13th, while Mark Aitchison's first dry outing on the Quattro Plant Kawasaki ended in 21st.

Keith Farmer, who will ride in place of Stuart Easton at Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki for the remainder of the weekend, was a solid 25th, four seconds off the ultimate pace on his first outing aboard the Superbike ZX-10R.