Northern Ireland’s Jonathan Rea claimed the first pole position of his FIM Superbike World Championship career with a lap record at Assen in Holland.
The Hannspree Ten Kate Honda rider scorched around the new-look Circuit van Drenthe in one minute 34.944 seconds at the start of the final Superpole 3 session. Rea is the only rider to have gone under the 1’35 mark on the new Assen layout.It was by far the best time of the weekend so far, with Ducati’s Jakob Smrz, who had been quickest on Friday, his closest rival but still some 0.111secs adrift.Troy Corser rounded off a good day on his BMW by claiming third place just ahead of championship leader Leon Haslam. He starts from the front row on his official BMW.Haslam, on his Alstar Suzuki, had been second after Superpole 2 but dropped down to fourth with a time that was 0.386secs off the pace. Assen debutant Leon Camier ensured there were five different motorcycle manufacturers at the top of the racing timesheets as he outshone his more experienced Aprilla teammate Max Biaggi to take fifth position.Biaggi failed to get past World SBK Superpole 2 after registering the 11th quickest time.A pair of Athea Ducatis were in sixth and seven place, with Carlos Checa edging out his British team-mate Shane Byrne.Ducati Xerox’s Michel Fabrizio rounded out the Superpole 3 finishers after a lacklustre WSB session.