Cluzel heads all-PTR front row at Silverstone

Jules Cluzel takes pole position at a damp Silverstone, ahead of fellow PTR Honda riders Sam Lowes, Alexander Lundh and Mathew Scholtz.
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Jules Cluzel will start the ninth round of the 2012 World Supersport Championship from pole position after holding onto his overnight advantage at Silverstone.

Conducted in similarly damp conditions to that of Q1, Cluzel took a while to work down to his Friday benchmark but would eventually surpass it by a second to hold firm with 2mins 22.258secs.

As it happens, Cluzel's Q1 time would have also been good enough to hold onto pole position as second place man Sam Lowes fell one second short of challenging his dominant PTR counterpart.

However, while Cluzel and Lowes's performance was certainly expected, the story of the session was arguably occurring behind them as PTR would see four of its six associated riders qualify on the front row of the grid, with Alexander Lundh in third and Mathew Scholtz in fifth.

Indeed, Lundh's result is remarkable for several reasons, the Swede returning to the series he raced in in 2010 and 2011 after being called up to replace Pawel Szkopek on the Bogdanka-backed Honda. At the back of the field after hitting problems in Q1, Lundh rocketed up the order in Q2 to peak at what is a huge career-best of third.

Similarly impressive was Scholtz, the young South African producing his best performance on the season on another of the Bogdanka sponsored PTR machines to join his team-mates on the front row.

Indeed, the inclement weather conditions offered an ideal opportunity for some of the lesser fancied riders to shine, with Imre Toth and Vladimir Leonov, both strong finishers in the wet at Monza and Assen respectively this season, qualifying in fifth and sixth, while Ronan Quarmby and Andrea Antonelli complete the second row.

Elsewhere, championship leader Kenan Sofuoglu has work to do from tenth on the grid aboard his Lorenzini Kawasaki, though the Turk at least fared far better than Fabien Foret and Broc Parkes, the expected front runners down in 17th and 18th.

Of the remaining British contingent, Martin Jessopp starts from an encouraging 16th position, while Dan Linfoot will make his debut in 19th place.

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Kenan Sofuoglu, World Supersport [Credit: Kenan Sofuoglu]
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[L-R]: Chaz Davies, Luca Scassa and Gino Rea, Donington Park WSS podium, 2011 [pic credit: Ian Hopgood Photography]

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