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Alex Lowes has opened up the fourth round of the 2013 MCE British Superbike Championship at Knockhill with the fastest time in FP1, the Samsung Honda rider leading team-mate Ryuichi Kiyonari.

With the BSB field back in action following a break of more than a month, new series leader Lowes picked up from where he left off at Oulton Park to emerge as the only rider to lap below 49secs around the Scottish circuit.

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That was enough to put a comfortable three tenths between himself and team-mate Kiyonari, the three-time champion showing an upturn in form having struggled for competitiveness on his return to the series so far this year.

Peter Hickman made it a Honda 1-2-3 by getting his Lloyds British GBmoto machine into third place, with title contender Shane Byrne following in fourth aboard the Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki.

James Westmoreland led the BMW charge in fifth position, ahead of Dan Linfoot on the second of the Lloyds British GBmoto Hondas, the 24-year-old returning to action this weekend after breaking his leg in an accident at Brands Hatch back in April.

Fresh from his Isle of Man TT outing, Josh Brookes was up to speed again in seventh, while his team-mate PJ Jacobsen found himself lodged in a Bathams Honda sandwich in ninth, the American flanked by Tommy Bridewell in eighth and Michael Rutter in tenth.