Eugene Laverty fended off a spirited attempt by Gino Rea to claim provisional pole position for the tenth round of the World Supersport Championship at Silverstone.

As with the Superbike riders, the Supersport field immediately went beneath the lap times set in FP1, but it was Laverty who continued to hold firm at the top of the timesheets.

Still, the Irishman was pushed hard by the increasingly impressive Rea, the reigning Superstock 600 champion picking up from his career-best fourth place at Brno to get to within a tenth of Laverty.

Joan Lascorz also broke into the 2mins 09secs bracket with the third fastest time, ahead of Kenan Sofugolu, who improved to fourth, and Miguel Praia on the second Parkalgar Honda.

Roberto Tamburini continued to suggest he could be a Supersport front runner in sixth position, ahead of David Salom on the best of the Triumphs, Fabien Foret and Katsuaki Fujiwara.

Billy McConnell was the highest-placed wild-card rider in tenth position, well up on Alex Lowes in 16th, Sam Lowes in 17th and James Westmoreland 18th.