Eugene Laverty admits he is surprised to be starting on the front row for the final round of the 2012 World Superbike Championship at Magny-Cours after struggling in the run up to Superpole.

Keen to bring his first season as an Aprilia rider to a successful close, Laverty has spent much of the weekend mired in the mid-pack, but came good when it mattered during Superpole to clinch third on the grid.

A welcome boost for the Irishman, who secured his first win on the RSV4 last time out at Portimao, Laverty however concedes that the weather could play a crucial part in his chances of taking the top spot again.

"To be honest I didn't expect to take third place. After the practice session I thought I would be battling for a spot on the second row.

"For the races we'll be a bit at the mercy of the weather which could change everything. In any case we still need to shave a few tenths of a second off our race pace in order to battle with the front runners."

Laverty is currently sixth in the overall standings, 14 points behind fifth place Jonathan Rea.

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