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Loris Baz will take the initiative into the remainder of the World Superbike Championship weekend in Jerez after snatching the top spot in second free practice.

On a day that saw high temperatures prevent many of the World Supersport and Superstock riders improve in the afternoon during their preceding sessions, WSBK FP2 proved similarly static for the most part with morning pace setter Marco Melandri holding firm out front for 40mins.

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However, with five minutes remaining a flurry of quick lap times would shake up the order, most notably with Baz powering to the top of the timesheets on the KawasakI ZX-10R, his time of 1min 42.677secs going less than a tenth ahead of Melandri.

A strong start to the weekend for Kawasaki, WSBK leader Tom Sykes would remain third on the combined timesheets, while Leon Haslam was a big improver between sessions, hauling himself from outside the top ten to end the first day in fourth place on the PATA Honda.

Davide Giugliano completed the top overall five as the best of the Ducati riders, ahead of Eugene Laverty on the Voltcom Crescent Suzuki, Chaz Davies - who suffered a tumble -, Sylvain Guintoli, Toni Elias and Jonathan Rea, but with just two tenths covering third down to tenth, things remain close ahead of tomorrow morning's crucial-for-Superpole FP3 session.

In the EVO class, Alessandroo Andreozzi was the surprise pace setter on the Pedercini Kawasaki in 12th place overall, the Italian - who scored his first WSBK top ten finish last time out at Laguna Seca - out-pacing Sylvain Barrier, David Salom and Niccolo Canepa.