Steve Plater romped to a stunning Superpole performance through the twists and turns of the tricky Cadwell Park circuit today to take the first ever front row qualifying position for the Yamaha R1 Superbike.

Plater and his factory machine were both in superb form during the single-lap discipline at the Lincolnshire track, where the time set by the fastest 16 riders of the previous two 40 minute ling qualifying sessions makes up the final grid positions for tomorrows brace of big bike races.

Six fastest at the end of the final timed qualifying session Plater was playing it cool as he headed out onto the track for his solitary flying lap. Despite a slide exiting the fast Charlie's bend and another at Park Bend Steve still managed to best his previously fastest time, clocking fourth fastest overall and a place on tomorrow's front row.

Speaking after the lap, local hero Plater said: "It wasn't the perfect lap that I try to put in but I'll take the time. This is the first front row for the factory Yamaha R1 and that has come just six months after we got out hands on the bikes fresh from the factory for the first time.

"That is a huge achievement and something I hope I'll be able to improve on even further tomorrow. I was very conscious that I had made a couple of mistakes during the lap but I just kept my head down and everything wide open, trying to be as smooth as I could.

"The bike always feels slightly different when we are running on the one-lap qualifying tyres but it didn't matter here today. The best news of all is that we have such a good race set-up for tomorrow that I really feel that we can be as competitive, if not more so, than we have been before."

Sean Emmett took sixth fastest overall on his Team Appleyard/Virgin Mobile Aiwa Yamaha. He noted: "That's OK for a time here. I had a moment when I flicked the bike over on its side and got a bit of a slide that cost me a fraction of a second. The bike felt really good in Superpole though, after a damp session earlier on and the timed one-off being held in brilliant sunshine I'm really hoping for good weather tomorrow.

"Whatever we get, the racing is going to be really close."

Simon Crafar took his factory R1 to eighth fastest, he commented: "I have to admit, I didn't do everything perfect, I was a little wide into the first part of the woodland section and that cost me a bit of time through there.

"I really like the track but I am having a bit of a problem through the final turn, Barn. It seems like the fast line through means having to aim the bike at the Armco barrier and ride at it before the track opens up before you.

"'I know I'm not quite there with that turn yet, but it will come. We have a good race set-up and we have found a tyre that is working very well for us so I can't wait for the races."

 

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