Jonathan Rea says he is revelling competing in front of his home crowd at Silverstone, particularly after planting the Ten Kate Honda on the front row of the grid.
Although he was comfortably beaten by Cal Crutchlow in the fight for pole position, the Northern Irishman was the only other rider to dip below 2mins 05secs.
Joining Crutchlow in producing a lap time that would have placed him comfortably inside the top ten for the recent MotoGP British Grand Prix, while he admits the Yamaha rider was too fast for him over a single lap, he is buoyant about his chances over a race distance.
“It's really fun to ride here and tomorrow should deliver two fantastic races – there are so many good passing places,” he said. “I want to thank all my fans and sponsors for coming out for my home race and I'll certainly ride with a smile on my face tomorrow. The last two weeks have been a little crazy but it's great to start the weekend at Silverstone like this.
“It's the front row, and you can't ask for much more than to start a race from there. It was a great time by Cal and it was too fast for me today, but I'm enjoying riding the bike, it's a lot of fun, and I think the 18 laps are going to go quite fast compared to my Suzuka adventure last weekend.
“So I'll need to pull the pin quite early on and see what happens, but the bike's good, the team's good and track is awesome – you can't help but smile when you're riding round here!”