Michael Rutter bounced back from a difficult day on track to secure second on the grid for the latest rounds of the Bennetts British Superbike Championship at Croft.
The NW200 Ducati rider had suffered a fall during the final free practice session on Saturday morning and then hit trouble when the new look qualifying system kicked off when a technical problem on his bike forced him to push the Ducati back to the pits to allow the team to get it sorted in time for him to take part in the second and third phases of the session.
However, with his problems firmly behind him, the 36-year-old produced a strong run in the top-ten shootout and was bettered by only Cal Crutchlow as he secured a solid second on the grid.
“After the problems we had today I really didn't expect to get on the front row for the races tomorrow,” he said. “I'm pleased we managed to get out there and get the bike sorted in time. We've had a couple of little problems but nothing major and we managed to get them sorted and get out and qualify on the front row, which is ideal.
“I just have to try and make sure that I can convert that into two strong results tomorrow.”
Team-mate John Laverty, who could secure the Daily Star Cup crown if he can outscore closest rival Martin Jessop by nine points on race day, qualified in 17th place and while he wasn't the quickest of the privateer runners as he continues to battle with injuries picked up in Scotland, he was ahead of Riders Racing Honda man Jessop on the times.
“I was hoping I might have been able to qualify a little higher on the grid but I'm looking forward to the races tomorrow,” he said. “I'm still struggling a little with the pain in my knee after my crash at Knockhill but hopefully that will be ok, I just need to get a good start and get my head down.”