Jonathan Rea topped the opening WorldSBK practice session at Magny-Cours ahead of Michael Van Der Mark and Alex Lowes. 

WorldSBK Magny-Cours, France - Free Practice Results (1)
PosRiderNatTeamTime
1Jonathan ReaGBRKawasaki Racing Team1:38.402s
2Michael Van Der MarkNEDMotorrad BMW WorldSBK Team+0.140s
3Alex LowesGBRKawasaki Racing Team+0.385s
4Toprak RazgatliogluTURPATA Yamaha+0.465s
5Scott ReddingGBRAruba.It Ducati+0.521s
6Alvaro BautistaSPATeam HRC+0.971s
7Leon HaslamGBRTeam HRC+1.309s
8Chaz DaviesGBRGoEleven Ducati+1.446s
9Garrett GerloffUSAGRT Yamaha+1.602s
10Tom SykesGBRMotorrad BMW WorldSBK Team+1.756s
11Lucas MahiasFRAKawasaki Puccetti+2.041s
12Andrea LocatelliITAPATA Yamaha+2.159s
13Jonas FolgerGERBenovo BMW+2.198s
14Leandro MercadoARGMIE Honda Racing+2.574s
15Axel BassaniITAMotocorsa Ducati+2.796s
16Michael RinaldiITAAruba.It Ducati+2.816s
17Tito RabatSPABarni Ducati+3.276s
18Isaac VinalesSPAOrelac Racing Kawasaki+3.597s
19Kohta NozaneJPNGRT Yamaha+4.560s
20Loris CressonBELPedercini Kawasaki+5.229s
21Christophe PonssonFRAGil YamahaNo Time Set

While a mostly dry weekend at Magny-Cours has been forecasted, riders chose to stay in pit lane early on as overnight rain dampened the track surface. 

Three of those riders included championship contenders Toprak Razgatlioglu, Rea and Scott Redding. 

Kohta Nozane was one of the first to venture out alongside Barni Ducati rider Tito Rabat. 

Short of running at the French circuit in recent seasons, Honda pairing Alvaro Bautista and Leon Haslam were others to test out the conditions. 

After setting the fastest lap of the four runners, Bautista returned to pit lane along with Nozane, while team-mate Haslam and Rabat continued on. 

It wasn’t until 20 minutes to go until that the action began to pick up courtesy of Andrea Locatelli. The Italian was soon followed by championship leader Razgatlioglu and Aruba.it Ducati duo Redding and Michael Rinaldi. 

With under ten minutes to go every rider was out on track and setting personal best lap times through to the checkered flag. 

Redding was the man at the top for most of it, before being bettered by Razgatlioglu, Lowes, Van Der Mark and Rea in the final minute.