The eighth round of the 2011 World Supersport Championship at Silverstone is underway, with David Salom claiming the quickest time during first free practice.

The Spaniard, who despite having only one podium to his name this season is just a point off second in the standings, swept to the top in the final seconds, creeping ahead of Fabien Foret by five hundredths of a second.

Foret himself had only just made it to the front with one of his final laps, usurping long-time pace setter Sam Lowes. The Briton, eyeing his first win on home ground this weekend, commanded an eight tenth margin at one stage, but he would eventually be reeled in by his rivals to leave him third at the end of the session.

He was trailed by countrymen Gino Rea and James Ellison, the local pair getting their weekends off to a strong start, while Florian Marino was also a promising sixth as Honda filled positions two to six.

Keen to turnaround a run of disappointing form, Luca Scassa was the top Yamaha rider in seventh, ahead of Broc Parkes, while Robbin Harms and Massimo Roccoli completed the top ten.

Home hope and championship leader Chaz Davies, meanwhile, had an inauspicious start to the weekend in 11th as his ParkinGO work on set-up around a circuit the Yamaha YZF-R6 has never raced at before.

Just behind, wild-card Luke Stapleford was a positive 15th fastest on the Bournemouth Kawasaki.