Sean Emmett, by the very narrowest of margins, outpaced joint championship leader Michael Rutter in free practice today for the Easter Monday double race second round of the British Superbike championship.

The MonsterMob Ducati rider grabbed the initiative as light rain spoiled both of Saturday's sessions to underline his determination to hit back at both Rutter and Rizla Suzuki's John Reynolds in the early season scrap for the crown.

"I was a bit disappointed after the first round, but now I'm at my favourite it is important that I get a couple of victories here, re-dressing the balance and pegging back the points leaders.

"I won here last year, and am keen for a repeat," said Emmett, whose best lap of the short Indy circuit came in a time of 47.124secs, just 0.05 seconds ahead of Rutter.

Riding the HM Plant Honda Fireblade, the Leiestershire based rider, the winner of the opening round is keen to add a second victory of the season: "I'm relieved to have got the first round out of the way - there was so much pressure there, and even though I'm not a great fan of this circuit, because it is a bit restrictive for Superbike racing, I'm going all out for more wins, but that will not be easy."

Those views are echoed by twice former champion Reynolds. He won the second race of the opening round, but having ridden cautiously in the miserable conditions, he is sixth on the leaderboard. "I know that when it matters my bike has the pace on the rest of the field and I am more determined that ever to win here, but that said, there are half a dozen riders out there capable of winning."

His team-mate Yukio Kagayama was marginally faster, but both were outpaced by Superbike Cup privateer rider Sam Corke, whose lap time of 47.676s all but matched the time of Aussie Dean Thomas aboard the Dienza Ducati.

Official qualifying is on Easter Sunday, with the races at 1.15 and 3.45 on Easter Monday.

 

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