Champion Jonathan Rea has started the final round of the 2015 World Superbike Championship as he means to go on by topping the timesheets on the first day of action in Qatar.

Hitting the front with just over five minutes of the session remaining, Rea denied Aprilia's Jordi Torres a clean sweep having topped FP1 earlier in the evening, the Kawasaki rider emerging a comfortable two tenths up on the Spaniard.

Tom Sykes completed a positive day for the Kawasaki team in third position, with Chaz Davies flying the flag for Ducati in fourth, ahead of leading Honda rider Michael van der Mark.

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Leon Haslam was sixth fastest on the Aprilia, with Xavi Fores bouncing back from his spill in FP1 to move back up the order in seventh.

Arguably his strongest start to a weekend all season, Randy de Puniet was eighth best and faster than Suzuki team-mate Alex Lowes, as Niccolo Canepa rounded out the top ten.

Further back, outgoing champion Sylvain Guintoli managed only nine laps on a disrupted day, leaving him down in 14th position.