Kenan Sofuoglu will start tomorrow's opening round of the 2009 World Supersport championship from pole position after setting the fastest time in Saturday's final qualifying session at Phillip Island in Australia.
The 2007 world champion lapped the 4.445km circuit with a new best lap of 1min 34.320sec, placing the Turkish rider over 0.3sec clear of nearest rival Joan Lascorz (Kawasaki).
“For us, the goal to day was to start from the front row of the grid so I am very happy to have pole position,” said Kenan. “It's a great bonus not only for me, but also my crew who have worked really hard to give me a great bike here. Really, everything is as we would want it but we are still not too sure how the tyre will last in the race tomorrow. Whatever happens, I will try my best to get a podium and hopefully a win.”
In front of his home crowd, Pitt, the current world champion, was fastest yesterday, and will start from third on the grid, ahead of Yamaha's Cal Crutchlow, who rounds out the front row for tomorrow's 21-lap race.
“The front row is certainly good enough and I'm happy with everything, and the front tyre is fine,” said Pitt. “We'll have to see how we go for 21 laps here but, looking at the times, I think we're the only ones to have done longer runs, so it'll definitely be an interesting race tomorrow.”
“I believe we've had an ideal start to the new season, getting both riders on the front row and with Kenan setting a new fastest lap for Phillip Island. Congratulations to him and his crew,” said team manager Ronald ten Kate. “More important, however, is the race tomorrow, in which tyre life will play a really important role. We're as well prepared as we can possibly be so we hope for two good results to back up today's impressive performance.”