Tireless Turk Kenan Sofuoglu will start tomorrow’s 2016 Supersport World Championship opening round at Phillip Island from pole position after dominating today’s Superpole qualifying shootout on his Kawasaki.
The reigning four-time world champion wrestled the ZX-6R around the 4.448km circuit in a best lap of 1m33.142secs, setting the time on his last flying lap in the 15-minute session.
American Patrick Jacobsen (Honda, 1:31.644) and Swiss rookie Randy Krummenacher (Kawasaki, 1:33.664) will complete the front row for the 18-lap race, to be run at 1:30pm tomorrow.
Krummenacher has joined WorldSSP from Moto2, and his teammate is Sofuoglu — shaping up as a potent combination for Kawasaki in the same vein as Team Green pair Jonathan Rea and Tom Sykes in WorldSBK.
Meanwhile, Italian Federico Caricasulo (Honda) was the biggest improver in Superpole, finishing up fourth overall — a whopping 11 spots better than his effort in yesterday’s two ‘timed’ practice sessions.
Caricasulo will have MV Agusta pair Lorenzo Zanetti and Alex Baldolini beside him on the second row of the grid, while two-time Phalli Island WorldSSP winner Jukes Cluzel (MV Agusta) will start from eighth after a crash at turn 11 in Superpole to sit alongside his spill at turn 12 yesterday.
Anthony West (Yamaha) will be the first Aussie on the grid in 15th position, three ahead of Aiden Wagner (MV Agusta). Then it’s Glenn Scott (Honda) in 20th, Alex Phillis (Honda) in 23rd, Mitch Levy (Yamaha) in 24th, Kane Burns (Suzuki) in 25th, and 16-year-old Lachlan Epis (Kawasaki) in 27th.