The Lincolnshire lad was the only rider to lap in the 1’26’s, setting the quickest-ever evo lap around his home circuit with a 1’26.708.
Even reigning champ Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki’s Shane Byrne was unable to catch up to the 22-year-old and with his best lap of 1’27.360 it was enough to place him second on the grid. Only four hundredths of a second behind Byrne was Milwaukee Yamaha’s James Ellison who rounds off the front row.
It was not a good final qualifying session Tyco Suzuki’s Josh Brookes who crashed out at Barn with two minutes remaining of the session while in seventh on the timesheets. He was not hurt, but he was not able to get back on the bike to fight for a front row or pole position start.
His team-mate PJ Jacobsen managed to stay on his bike and starts the second row, and only misses out on the front row of the grid by two hundredths of a second. Halsall Racing’s Tommy Bridewell and Samsung Honda’s Ryuichi Kiyonari round off row two.
Brookes heads row three with Rapid Solicitors Keith Farmer and GBmoto’s Peter Hickman, with the Quattro Plant Kawasaki of Chris Walker rounding off the top ten grid positions with his best lap of 1’28.750.
Lowes again found the good pace to place him on provisional pole, and like Byrne only completed three laps of the circuit. This time is was not the Lincolnshire rider’s team-mate who was third fastest, it was Brookes who had that honour and comfortably made his way into Q3 to fight for a front row start.
A desperate last lap dash by Buildbase BMW’s James Westmoreland was not enough to push him out of the elimination zone and was only three thousandths of a second off the pace to place him into Q3, leaving Walker free to go into the final qualifier.
Westmoreland is eliminated alongside GBmoto’s Dan Linfoot, Milwaukee Yamaha’s Josh Waters, Bathams Honda’s Michael Rutter, Padgett’s Jakub Smrz, PR Racing’s Karl Harris and Quattro Plant’s Barry Burrell, who all never made it out of the drop zone, and could not match the times set by Walker and ninth fastest Hickman.
Buildbase BMW’s Jon Kirkham crashed in Q1 at Park Corner and the damage was so bad on the bike that he was not able to start Q2 and will start the first race tomorrow on eighteenth on the grid and on the sixth row.
ELIMINATED: James Westmoreland, Dan Linfoot, Josh Waters, Michael Rutter, Jakub Smrz, Karl Harris, Barry Burrell, Jon Kirkham
Lowes topped the timesheets in the opening qualifying session and clocked his quickest time on his eighth lap with a 1’27.368, to bag himself a provisional pole position. Byrne decided that three laps were enough to secure his place in Q2 and he was right with his 1’27.544 lap. Lowes team-mate Kiyonari was six tenths of a second slower than his younger colleague but was still third fastest in Q1.
In the first half of the session Stel Racing’s Aaron Zanotti, Westmoreland and Rapido Sport’s Matteo Baiocco were all hovering around the drop zone, but the BMW of Westmoreland did enough to pull his way into Q2. But the same could not be said Zanotti or Baiocco.
The Ducati of Baiocco fell back into the elimination places, and then the Italian crashed at Park Corner, ending his qualification ambitions. Two Wheel Racing’s Jenny Tinmouth also crashed but at Mansfield while she was in elimination contention, and she failed to progress into the second qualifying session.
QBSD Motorsports Jamie Poole never made it out of the drop zone. He was eliminated with Riders BMW’s Martin Jessopp, Halsall Racing’s Lee Costello and Tsingtao WKbikes rider Howie Mainwaring. The Kawasaki rider was the last person to make it out on track and improved on his time from 25th to 20th, but it was not enough and he failed to make it into Q2.
ELIMINATED: Martin Jessopp, Howie Mainwaring Smart, Matteo Baiocco, Lee Costello , Aaron Zanotti, Jenny Tinmouth, Jamie Poole
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