Ryuichi Kiyonari claims pole position for the MCE British Superbike season opener at Donington Park, edging out James Ellison by 0.029s with defending champion Shane Byrne completes the front row.

The Buildbase BMW rider broke the outright lap record around Donington Park to claim top spot and was able to fight off a late charge from Ellison and Byrne.

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Milwaukee Yamaha's Josh Brookes managed to grab fourth place, with Byrne's team-mate Stuart Easton rounding out the top five.

In an eventful Datatag Extreme Qualifying session, Q1 was briefly halted by a red flag after Morello Racing's Victor Cox suffered a fall at Goddards. The British rider ran slightly wide and as he tried to apply the power on the home straight the bike slipped from under him.

His Kawasaki ZX-10R tumbled in the grass and tossed debris on to the track forcing a red flag so the marshals could clear the track.

Cox wasn't the only rider to suffer a crash during qualifying, most notably Kiyonari's team-mate Lee Jackson who went off at Redgate in Q1. The Buildbase BMW rider was able to recover from his off to scramble into Q2 but could only manage a 1m 31.230s to put him 18th on the grid.

Milwaukee Yamaha's Broc Parkes had just pulled himself out of the gravel at Redgate before Jackson joined him, but the Australian rider recomposed himself to get the top ten shootout to finish P8.

Danny Buchan will start from sixth on the grid, while the third row will be occupied by Peter Hicken, Parkes and Linfoot. Row four sees Billy McConnell tenth with Luke Mossey 11th and James Westmoreland 12th on the grid.