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Davide Giugliano has maintained his place at the top of the World Superbike Championship timesheets following third free practice for round seven at Misano.

Leading the WSBK timesheets overnight, though both Sylvain Guintoli and Marco Melandri would usurp Giugliano's provisional effort to enjoy stints at the head of the order during the session, the Ducati rider would strike back in the final minutes to lead with a 1min 36.125secs lap.

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Putting Giugliano just under a tenth ahead of the Aprilias, led by Melandri over Guintoli, Loris Baz moved into fourth place on the timesheets, ahead of Chaz Davies and Tom Sykes, the Kawasaki rider slipping to sixth after failing to improve on his FP2 effort.

In the fight to reach SP2 automatically, Leon Haslam lifted himself into the top ten in seventh place, the British rider doing so at the expense of Toni Elias.

As with Sykes, Alex Lowes didn't improve on his time but maintained his place in the top ten in eighth and will thus be joined in SP2 by Jonathan Rea - who was ninth despite a technical issue on his PATA Honda - and Eugene Laverty.

Making it into SP1 behind 11th place Elias were the best of the EVO runners, headed up again by Niccolo Canepa but pushed hard by Sylvain Barrier, the Frenchman showing impressive form on his return to competition after a three-month stint out through injury.

Wild-card Matteo Baiocco is also through despite dropping his Ducati, a fate repeated by Fabien Foret on the MAHI Kawasaki, though the Frenchman too is also comfortably through in 15th. He will be joined by Sheridan Morais, Ayrton Badovini, Claudio Corti, David Salom and Ivan Goi.

With 30 riders competing this weekend, a large number have already had their grid positions for the Sunday determined with Christian Iddon, Jeremy Guarnoni, Riccardo Russo, Alessandro Andreozzi, Bryan Staring, Imre Toth, Aaron Yates, Peter Sebestyen, Geoff May and Michael Savary filling positions 21 to 30.