Reigning World Supersport Champion Sebastien Charpentier has started as he means to go on, by leading free practice one at Valencia ahead of the third round of the 2006 World Supersport Championship.
He lapped in a 1min 37.749secs on his Winston Ten Kate Honda, and was the only rider to lap under the 1min 38sec mark. Charpentier is still a few seconds off the time he set when testing at Valencia at the end of March however, with first qualifying this afternoon, the times are going to tumble providing the dry weather holds out.
Katusaki Fujiwara and his team-mate Yoann Tiberio were second and third fastest on the Megabike Hondas. Gianluca Vizziello came home in an impressive fourth place now that his bike is working well. The Lorenzini by Leoni team took delivery of their bikes late, leaving them to play catch up at the first two rounds. They improved the engines before heading to the Misano test where they managed to sort out the suspension. With both engine and suspension working well Vizziello could be on for a competitive race weekend.
The Yamaha Germany pairing of Broc Parkes and Kevin Curtain were fifth and sixth respectively just ahead of Winston Ten Kate's Kenan Sofuoglu. Both the Ten Kate riders are hoping for success this weekend with Charpentier chasing a win to further his championship lead and Sofuoglu wanting to step on the podium.
Spanish wild-card rider Jordi Torres made it into the top ten on his Speed Moto Yamaha which is an achievement considering the level of competition in Supersport.
WSS free practice results (1) – Valencia:
1. Sebastien Charpentier
2. Katsuaki Fujiwara
3. Yoann Tiberio
4. Gianluca Vizziello
5. Broc Parkes
6. Kevin Curtain
7. Kenan Sofuoglu
8. Barry Veneman
9. Jordi Torres
10. Robbin Harms