Leon Camier prepared for what he intends to be a MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship in association with Pirelli clinching ride in the penultimate round at Silverstone by powering his Airwaves Yamaha to a ninth pole start in a dominant campaign.
He needs only to finish ahead of his team-mate James Ellison in a points scoring position to take the sport’s premier crown and Camier warmed up by bettering the lap record in the third period of free practice although he was not quite able to match that pace in the grid deciding Swan Combi 50 Roll for Pole.
Ellison pressed him hard, but Camier took the verdict with a lap of the 2.213 mile International circuit in 1m 25.391secs, an average speed of 93.29mph and afterwards he reflected: “that was hard work, one of the hardest sessions of the season, but it is mega to be on pole and it is all going to plan.
“Fingers crossed now, we can keep it going like this in the races and get the job done but for sure James is going to be very competitive. I will need to keep the pressure on in the races, but also need to be careful.
“I need a good start, and that is not one of my strong points, or I will make things hard for myself. I have to get away with them, but be sensible,” added Camier, the winner of 16 races, amassing a 99.5 points lead in the process.
Ellison starts alongside him at the front of the grid, less than a tenth of a second down, and determined to rack up strong points in his efforts to ensure the Airwaves team maintain their one-two in the standings as Hydrex Honda rider Stuart Easton makes a late challenge for second place overall.
Easton, 32 points down on Ellison going into this round, ran fourth fastest, marginally slower than HM Plant Honda’s Josh Brookes. Tommy Hill headed the second row for Hydrex Honda with a lap in 1m 26.345secs ahead of the Builbase Kawasaki of John Laverty. Simon Andrews, riding the MSS Colchester Kawasaki, and Sylvain Guintoli on the Worx Crescent Suzuki lined up alongside them.
Julien da Costa and Ian Lowry completed the top ten qualifiers while Richard Cooper, making his second appearance in the series, was the fastest of the Mirror.co.uk Cup competitors. He put in a lap in 1m 27.415secs aboard the Co-ordit Yamaha, running fourteenth overall, while National Superstock Champion Alastair Seeley riding the BSB Evo Class Relentless Suzuki was a further two places back, with a lap in 1m 27.544secs.
Michael Rutter returning to action aboard the Bathams Ducati – the fifth different make of bike he has raced this season – had a difficult time, running 21st, starting adrift of a fifth row comprising of Cup riders Tom Tunstall, Peter Hickman, Gary Mason – already assured of the title, and Tommy Bridewell.
Top ten qualifying times
Leon Camier (Airwaves Yamaha) 1m:25.391s
James Ellison (Airwaves Yamaha) +0.097s
Josh Brookes (HM Plant Honda) +0.577s
Stuart Easton (Hydrex Honda) +0.700s
Tommy Hill (Hydrex Honda) +0.954s
John Laverty (Buildbase Kawasaki) +1.006s
Simon Andrews (MSS Colchester Kawasaki) +1.049s
Sylvain Guintoli (Worx Crescent Suzuki) +1.130s
Julien Da Costa (MSS Colchester Kawasaki) +1.166s
Ian Lowry (Relentless Suzuki by TAS) +1.268s