Briton puts pressure on Biaggi ahead of Sunday's final round of the WSB Championship.
Last Updated: October 5, 2012 4:59pm
Tom Sykes has made a great start to the final round of the World Superbike Championship at Magny-Cours as he bids to snatch the title away from standings' leader Max Biaggi.
Britain's Kawasaki rider posted the fastest time in Friday's first qualifying practice session in France, while the Aprilia of Biaggi was only seventh.
Sykes registered a time of one minute, 38.200 seconds, which was 0.448 of a second quicker than Carlos Checa's Ducati - the second best time.
Biaggi was 0.944s off the pace, as he goes into Sunday's concluding two races with a lead of 30.5 points over Sykes.
Biaggi has never finished outside of the top six at Magny Cours, while Marco Melandri is the only other rider still in with a mathematical chance of overtaking the Italian.
The 30-year-old Melandri was third quickest on his BMW in Friday's session, 0.542 seconds slower than Sykes.
Leading positions after first qualifying session:
1 T Sykes (Gbr) Kawasaki One minute, 38.200 seconds
2 C Checa (Spa) Ducati 1:38.648
3 M Melandri (Ita) BMW 1:38.742
4 D Giugliano (Ita) Ducati 1:38.962
5 J Rea (Gbr) Honda 1:39.014
6 M Fabrizio (Ita) BMW 1:39.139
7 M Biaggi (Ita) Aprilia 1:39.144
8 L Haslam (Gbr) BMW 1:39.149
9 S Guintoli (Fra) Ducati 1:39.186
10 L Camier (Gbr) Suzuki 1:39.285
11 E Laverty (Gbr) Aprilia 1:39.382
12 A Badovini (Ita) BMW 1:39.530