Eugene Laverty has joked that he isn't destined to come away with a free watch as a prize for claiming a World Superbike pole position this season after notching up his sixth front row start of the season at Magny-Cours.
The Irishman has been outstanding in qualifying this season, getting himself onto the front row in six of the twelve races, but a maiden WSBK pole position continues to elude him.
Indeed, Laverty was hopeful of his chances in France as his best lap in Superpole undercut the lap record held by his Yamaha predecessor Cal Crutchlow, only for Jonathan Rea to go marginally faster.
A return to the circuit where he made his Yamaha testing debut last season, Laverty has high hopes for the races, even if he now has just one more chance to win a free Tissot watch as a prize for scoring pole position.
“This was the first track where I rode the R1 and I was strong immediately, so I was looking forward to coming back to where I have already ridden the bike, because it makes things a lot easier.
“I was hoping I'd be fighting for pole position, but Johnny beat me to it. I've been second so many times this year that I've accepted that I'm going to get a free Tissot watch! We'll have to see how we get on at Portimao…
“It would be good to get another win but rostrums would be good too. I'll try for the win, but the main thing is two solid finishes on the podium, I'll be happy with that.”
Laverty comes into the race weekend just 25 points behind the absent Max Biaggi.