Carlos Checa will head into the second day of World Superbike action at Miller Motorsports Park as the clear favourite for pole position after putting himself almost a second clear of his rivals in Q1.

The Spaniard, who arrives in the United States leading the overall standings, has a remarkable record around the Utah circuit and displayed as much during the morning session when he was comfortably fastest despite technical issues.

Showing his hand with a trouble free session in the afternoon, Checa's 1min 48.260secs was well up on Leon Camier's second place effort of 1min 49.055secs.

Indeed, Camier was the only rider to get within a second of Checa, the Briton enjoying arguably his strongest day of practice since joining World Superbikes as he showed strong pace to head off Aprilia team-mate Max Biaggi in third.

Tom Sykes was a strong fourth fastest on the Kawasaki to give the manufacturer optimism for the weekend, while Troy Corser was a solid fifth for BMW, well ahead of team-mate Leon Haslam languishing down in 16th.

Despite the circuit's length, things remain close in the mid-field, with just one second covering Biaggi in third down to James Toseland in 18th position.

Amongst those get towards the front of that pack, Jonathan Rea was sixth fastest for Castrol Honda, ahead of Jakub Smrz on the best of the Effenbert Liberty Ducatis and Monza winner Eugene Laverty, the Irishman making good gains in the final ten minutes having been as low as 19th at one stage.

Michel Fabrizio and Ayrton Badovini rounded out the top ten, nudging out Noriyuki Haga and Marco Melandri, the latter visiting Miller Motorsports Park for the first time this weekend.

Sylvain Guintoli was 13th fastest, but saw his progress hampered by an accident, while WSBK wild-card Josh Waters holds down a provisional Superpole spot in 15th after a solid return on the Yoshimura Suzuki.

Currently, Haslam is on the brink in 16th, while Joan Lascorz, Toseland, Mark Aitchison, Maxime Berger and Roberto Rolfo occupy the danger zone with Q2 coming up tomorrow.

The close of the session was hampered by drops of rain that brought out the white with a diagonal red cross flag, but not enough to disrupt proceedings.



Loading Comments...