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Sam Lowes shrugged off a late fall to come away from first free practice for the 11th World Supersport Championship round at the Nurburgring with the fastest time.
The Bogdanka PTR Honda rider, who is hoping a good result in Germany this weekend will keep him in the hunt for the 2012 title, revealed his attentions early as he struck to the top of the timesheets and was subsequently never headed again.
Indeed, despite taking a tumble with ten minutes of the session remaining at turn eight, Lowes was still the only rider to crack the 2min marker, the Briton setting a best time of 1min 59.863secs to go three tenths quicker than Honda counterpart Broc Parkes on the Ten Kate-prepared CBR600RR.
Series leader Kenan Sofuoglu, who can mathematically wrap up a third WSS title this weekend, was third fastest on the Lorenzini Kawasaki, ahead of PTR Honda pairing Ronan Quarmby and Jules Cluzel.
Fabien Foret, the only rider other than Lowes and Cluzel with a chance of stopping Sofuoglu taking the title, opened up his weekend with sixth best on the Intermoto Step Kawasaki, ahead of Imre Toth and local wild-card rider David Linortner.
Fresh from his best finish of the season in Russia, Mathew Scholtz was ninth quickest on the second of the Bogdanka PTR Hondas, ahead of Sheridan Morais.
Elsewhere, Massimo Roccoli's return to Yamaha machinery yielded an encouraging 15th fastest on his first outing, while Dino Lombardi – the rider Roccoli ousted from the PATA by Martini team – has already landed a ride after snapping up the available seat at Lorini Honda. The young Italian was 21st fastest.