Hill cruises to Oulton Park pole

Hill takes pole again at Oulton Park, but his closest rivals remain nearby on rows one and two.
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Tommy Hill has taken his fourth MCE British Superbike Championship pole position of the season at Oulton Park after dominating throughout qualifying.

Having topped the first dry session of the race weekend in FP3, Hill proceeded to head up SP1 and SP2 comfortably before striking to the top spot with his first flying lap in SP3.

That burst of speed was enough to put him a good three tenths ahead on the competition and places him in prime position to extend his series advantage when the first of three races get underway later this afternoon.

Even so, his nearest championship rivals remain in close company with Josh Brookes going second fastest on the Tyco Suzuki, while Ian Lowry – who struggled for pace at Oulton Park earlier in the season – was a fine third on the Padgetts Honda.

Snetterton and Knockhill race winner Michael Laverty will get underway in fourth position, the Samsung Honda lucky to secure a front row spot after setting the same lap time as Shane Byrne. However, Laverty would get the crucial position by virtue of setting the 1min 36.421secs lap time first.

Having broken into the top ten for the first time this season at Knockhill, Alastair Seeley lowered his best grid slot to sixth place on the second of the Tyco Suzuki's, holding off the revelation of the session, Peter Hickman.

The former MSS Bathams Kawasaki rider is competing in only his second event aboard the Buildbase BMW as a substitute for the injured Dan Linfoot, but gave a convincing pitch for a longer-term deal by securing the team's best qualifying position of seventh since it switched from Kawasaki to BMW machinery in 2011.

Less than half a second off the front row, Hickman's time was enough to see off James Westmoreland, who gave WFR Honda some cheer after Alex Lowes threw away the chance of a high grid slot with a crash in SP1. Indeed, though the youngster made it through to SP2 in second position on the strength of his first SP1 effort, his subsequent tumble would sideline him from the remainder of the session. Together with Graeme Gowland failing to set an SP2 time, WFR Honda will have two of its riders starting from the fifth row.

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Tommy Hill Swan Yamaha - [picture credit: Ian Hopgood]
Tommy Hill Swan Yamaha - [picture credit: Ian Hopgood]
Tommy Hill Swan Yamaha - [picture credit: Ian Hopgood]
Tommy Hill Swan Yamaha - [picture credit: Ian Hopgood]
Tommy Hill    [Credit David Salisbury]
Tommy Hill Swan Yamaha - [picture credit: Ian Hopgood]
Jason O`Halloran, Honda Racing [Credit: Ian Hopgood]
Josh Brookes, Anvil Hire Yamaha, [Credit: Ian Hopgood]
Shane Byrne, Be Wiser Ducati, [Credit: Ian Hopgood]
Luke Mossey, JG Speedfit Kawasaki, [Credit: Ian Hopgood]
Peter Hickman, Smiths BMW [Credit: Ian Hopgood]
Tommy Bridewell, Team WD-40 Kawasaki [Credit: Ian Hopgood]
Bradley Ray, Buildbase Suzuki [Credit: Ian Hopgood]
Sylvain Guintoli, Bennetts Suzuki [Credit: Ian Hopgood]
James Ellison, McAMS Yamaha [Credit: Ian Hopgood]
Dan Linfoot, Honda Racing [Credit: Ian Hopgood]
Alastair Seeley, Tyco BMW [Credit: Ian Hopgood]
Lee Jackson, Smiths Racing BMW [Credit: Ian Hopgood]

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