The opening day of WorldSBK action at Magny-Cours went very much the way of Pata Yamaha rider Toprak Razgatlioglu. 

The current championship leader was consistently quicker than anyone during the race simulations, before emphatically setting a time of 1:37.138s which was over two tenths faster than Scott Redding. 

His biggest title rival at present, Jonathan Rea was a further tenth back in third after topping a less representative FP1 session due to track action being limited because of damp conditions.

While fast in the changing conditions this morning - finished fifth, Razgatlioglu’s 15 lap race simulation this afternoon left him ‘very positive’, so much so ‘that now we are ready to race’.  

Razgatlioglu added: "Today in the first free practice, with the bad conditions it was not a really an easy start and for me it is also the first time I ride a Yamaha at this track in the dry conditions.

"We changed some set-up for FP2 and I am feeling much better! I tried a race simulation of 15 laps – which was very, very positive. 

"We are happy because we found a good improvement in the afternoon, the R1 is working very well here and now we are ready to race. We need to win again, and I aim to fight for the victory."

For Razgatlioglu’s team-mate Andrea Locatelli, it was an opening day that didn’t see him light up the times as we’ve seen in recent rounds. 

However, the Italian was happy with the work done on his first visit to Magny-Cours with WorldSBK machinery. 

"It was a difficult first day in the end, but also I am happy - we don’t see a top position overall but we work very well," said Locatelli. 

"We tried to make a long run this afternoon, it is my first time here in Magny-Cours with this bike and the pace was not so bad! 

"For sure we need to try to search for a little bit more speed, especially in sector two, but in general I am happy because it is the first time.

"We need to work a little bit around the bike and also I need to understand the track, but tomorrow we can improve. 

"It’s not easy, I have never seen the track in the dry because last year in WorldSSP I only rode in the wet conditions, but we will see what is possible and for sure we will try to get the maximum."