Tyco BMW’s Michael Laverty topped the MCE British Superbike timesheets on day one of testing at Snetterton and is less than two-tenths off the lap record.
The almost-Welshman put in a 1’48.102 right at the end of the day to be 0.354s ahead of the pack but has had no new parts to try. Laverty has concentrated on fine-tuning his base setting all day and and is was enough to demote Quattro Kawasaki’s Luke Mossey to second place with only a few minutes left.
Mossey’s 1’48.456 had been good enough for top spot until Laverty’s final exit while Honda’s Jason O’Halloran took third place with a 1’48.670 on the ageing but still fast Fireblade during session three but it was the RAF Reserves BMW of Alastair Seeley who was quickest on the combined sheets with his time from the second session.
JG Speedfit Kawasaki’s James Ellison was in fifth on the ZX-10R. He and the rest of his squad have debuted a new fuel tank and seat unit at the Norfolk track which the Kendal man says has helped a little and he has also worked on engine braking and fork settings.
Laverty’s team-mate Christian Iddon ended the day in sixth place with Tommy Bridewell’s Bennetts Suzuki in seventh on a 1’49.043 set in the second session. Peter Hickman, who sat out the opening period this morning with an electrical problem, was eighth.
Leon Haslam had never ridden the new Snetterton before so took some time learning the layout. He also had the new tank and seat unit and set a 1’49.147 in session two. John Hopkins put the ePayMe Yamaha in tenth place with Danny Buchan in 11th.
Richard Cooper ended the day early after suffering a crash at Murrays (formerly Russell’s) in the second session. His time of 1’49.554 was good enough for 12th place, one ahead of Buildbase BMW team-mate Lee Jackson.
Ian Hutchinson was easily the fastest of the Pirelli Superstock 1000 rider, finishing in 14th overall, one ahead of Shane Byrne who only went out in the final session of the day.