Suzuki riders swept the top three positions at the end of the first major BSB test of 2010, held over four days at Cartagena in Spain.

Fastest of all was returning BSB hero, and former WSBK race winner, Yukio Kagayama, who cut nearly a second off the previous best lap time with a 1min 33.51sec circulation during the final day.

But that could only keep Worx Crescent Suzuki team-mate Tommy Hill from the top by 0.02sec as the Englishman also upped his pace.

"We're very, very pleased with today's outcome," admitted team manager Jack Valentine. "We had only planned for three days' testing here but considering the high workload and the teething issues we've experienced we felt the extra day would help prepare the team better for the next test at Guadix, starting Tuesday.

"Yukio's had his work cut out these last few days, but today he was able to put in 42 laps - nearly equal to what he did over the entire three previous days. This brought him up to Tommy's pace and it was a real pleasure to see the pair of them all-but sharing the best lap time. But just as importantly those lap times weren't one-offs for either of them, they were able to lap consistently at this very fast pace.

"So we're really happy with the progress made. We've come here with a team that's much bigger than we had last year and we've come with new kit in the form of the ?hlins suspension and Motec engine management. The bikes, the riders and the team are really starting to gel - we've achieved everything we set out to do," he added.

Third fastest was another GSX-R1000, this time the Relentless-backed machine of Michael Laverty. Laverty set a best lap time of 1min 34.3sec to trail Kagayama by 0.79sec, but remain 0.1sec clear of the top non-Suzuki rider - Motorpoint Yamaha's Dan Linfoot.

Linfoot also impressed by outpacing illustrious team-mate and former BSB and WSBK champion Neil Hodgson by half a second. Sandwiched between the two R1s were Swan Honda riders James Ellison (1min 34.5sec) and Stuart Easton (1min 34.8sec).

Tied with Hodgson on a 1min 34.9sec was the second Relentless Suzuki of Alastair Seeley, while the HM Plant Honda team found itself at the tail of the unofficial timesheets in ninth and tenth.

Josh Brookes set a 1min 35.0sec while former champion Ryuichi Kiyonari clocked a 1min 35.2sec.



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