Jim Moodie was the faster of the two Triumph ValMoto riders around the frantic 1.27-mile Brands Hatch Indy circuit - but not by much, as his team-mate Craig Jones was just three-thousandths of a second adrift.

The warm and sunny second qualifying session saw newly crowned series champion Karl Harris take pole with a ridiculously quick 47.332secs lap. It also saw less than one second split the top 15 riders.

Incredibly, Moodie's best time of 48.240secs - just 0.02 seconds outside the current lap record - was only good enough to earn him a fourth row start for tomorrow's British Supersport Championship race. Jones demonstrated the same enormous levels of skill and commitment as his team-mate - a fact that was reflected in his near identical time of 48.243secs, but the miniscule difference was to be the deciding factor between 14th and 15th places on the grid.

"I was riding right on the jagged edge for the whole of both sessions," said Moodie, "I knew that I had to do a 48-second lap to get on the front row, but I just couldn't find it. I came really close to highsiding at Paddock when the rear started spinning up before the apex and I had to back off. I wasn't going to crash just to prove I was on the limit - something that I already knew. The Triumph ValMoto Daytona 600 is a fantastic bike and everything is working really well - we just need a fraction more power and we'll be on the front row."

Jones confirmed the view of his team-mate. After going tenth quickest in the morning session, he was disappointed not to be further up the order at the close of play. However, the confidence that he now has in his Triumph ValMoto Daytona 600 is encouraging.

"Qualifying is very tough for us," admitted the 18-year-old, "We're lapping almost every circuit as fast as any Supersport rider has previously done, but we're still not quite there. It's good that the Triumph ValMoto Daytona 600 has such a great chassis, because it's allowing myself and Jim to ride it at 100 per cent all the time - and there aren't many bikes that would let you get away with that."

Triumph ValMoto team manager Jack Valentine summed up the situation.

"Obviously I don't like having to start from the fourth row," he said, "It makes life hard in the race and that is where we are strongest. That said, I'm very pleased with progress we've made with the Triumph ValMoto Daytona 600s, and Jim and Craig are doing a tremendous job.

"It was so close out there that there were six places covered by just 0.1secs. We've got a fantastic package, but we're just a little bit down on horsepower. Our bikes are already faster than any of the 600cc bikes that we've ever run and, with a little more time, I know that we can go faster still."

 

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