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Jules Cluzel will start the first World Supersport Championship race to be held in Russia from pole position after just edging out Kenan Sofuoglu in qualifying at the Moscow Raceway.

The Frenchman had held down fourth place overnight, behind Sofuoglu, Sam Lowes and Broc Parkes, but having signalled his intentions by topping FP2 earlier in the day, he once again went fastest during the more important Q2 session.

Faster than championship leader Sofuoglu by a mere 0.031secs, it is Cluzel's fourth pole position of the season after achieving the same feat at Donington Park, Motorland Aragon and Silverstone.

Fellow Honda riders Lowes and Parkes improved their times, but settled for third and fourth positions, while Sheridan Morais got the better of Kawasaki counterpart Fabien Foret to head up the second row.

Vladimir Leonov, whose Yakhnich Motorsport sponsors were behind the bid to bring World Superbikes/Supersport to Russia for the first time, will start his home round from a decent seventh position, ahead of fellow Yamaha rider Andrea Antonelli on the Bike Service YZF-R6.

Alex Baldolini completed the session as the highest-placed of the two Triumphs on the grid in ninth position, ahead of Gabor Talmacsi on the ProRace Honda.

Elsewhere, MSD RN Kawasaki rider Florian Marino caused a lengthy stoppage when he crashed in the opening minutes, while series newcomer Michael Van der Mark on the Ten Kate Honda didn't get out on track for the entire session.