Kawasaki's Tom Sykes has bagged provisional World Superbike pole position at Silverstone this afternoon in a drying session which saw both Max Biaggi and Jonathan Rea outside of the crucial top 16 finishers.
Aprilia's Biaggi was 17th with Rea one place behind and the pair will be out of Superpole should it rain in the second qualifying session tomorrow, which looks highly likely.
Sykes, meanwhile, made the most of tricky conditions to lap at 2'06.115, grabbing the lead from reigning world champion Checa with ten minutes of the session remaining. Sylvain Guintoli was third on his debut with the Pata Ducati squad while Leon Camier rounds out the front row only half-a-second off the pace.
Chaz Davies put in a late, fast lap to take fifth place ahead of Jakub Smrz on the Effenbert 1098R. Eugene Laverty also left it late to take his spot in seventh while Guintoli's pace seems to have woken up Lorenzo Zanetti, who finished in eighth place.
Maxime Berger, on the second Effenbert bike, started brightly but slid down the order to ninth while John Hopkins nipped into tenth place at session end. Marco Melandri and Leon Haslam are nailed together in 12th and 13th places but Ayrton Badovini is the leading BMW in 11th spot. Nico Canepa and Loris Baz round out the top 15 while David Johnson finished in 22nd.