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Jonathan Rea has denied Tom Sykes the outright World Superbike pole position record in Thailand by just 0.003s to reaffirm the Kawasaki domination at the track while Leon Camier placed his Red Bull Honda on the front row.

The triple World Superbike champion produced a blitzing late lap of 1m 32.814s to edge ahead of Kawasaki teammate Sykes who was hoping to take the outright pole position record having equalled Troy Corser’s career pole tally at the 2018 season opener in Australia.

Having clinched five out of six World Superbike race wins in Thailand, with Sykes taking the other, Kawasaki confirmed its domination at the Buriram track despite the handicap of the 2018 technical regulations.

With Sykes narrowly missing out the Kawasaki pair are joined by factory Honda’s Camier on the front row in Thailand while the British rider’s former MV Agusta team impressed with Jordi Torres putting his F4 on the front of the second row.

Xavi Fores bounced back from his FP3 clash with Eugene Laverty to put his Barni Ducati fifth in qualifying as Pata Yamaha’s Alex Lowes completed the second row.

World Superbike championship leader Marco Melandri will start from the front of the third row for Aruba.it Racing Ducati with Milwaukee Aprilia’s Laverty splitting the Italian from his teammate Chaz Davies who starts from ninth place.

Michael van der Mark could only manage 10th in Superpole 2 for Pata Yamaha but stayed ahead of the Superpole 1 graduates Lorenzo Savadori (Milwaukee Aprilia) in 11th and Toprak Razgatlioglu (Puccetti Kawasaki) in 12th.