Aragon WSBK: Bautista on pole, Rea down in 10th

Valentin Khorounzhiy

Rea was 0.964s off Bautista's pace, having failed to improve on his final run, and his 10th place marks the worst qualifying result of his tenure with Kawasaki.

Having topped the Saturday morning practice after Bautista swept the Friday sessions, Rea took the initial lead with a 1m50.127s, only for Bautista to go a tenth faster right away.

And while the reigning champion shaved off half a tenth from his effort, Bautista immediately responded with a 1m49.798s.

Fellow Ducati rider Eugene Laverty then split he pair, before Tom Sykes lapped just 0.002s slower than Bautista on his BMW.

But Bautista improved once more, holding on to a lead of 0.099s heading into the qualifying-tyre runs in the closing minutes of the session.

Laverty retook second place as he kicked off his final run, and found more laptime on his second attempt, but was left 0.021s adrift of Bautista.

Bautista soon reasserted his dominance, however, as he fired in a brutal 1m49.049s with a minute left on the clock to ensure he would top a second consecutive qualifying session.

GRT Yamaha rookie Sandro Cortese snuck into second place shortly thereafter, lapping 0.365s slower than Bautista, while Sykes denied works Yamaha rider Alex Lowes a spot on the front row by just 0.006s.

Barni Ducati rider Michael Ruben Rinaldi followed Bautista on his fastest lap and took fifth on the grid, ahead of GoEleven rider Laverty.

Sykes' BMW teammate Markus Reiterberger, the second factory Ducati of Chaz Davies and Pedercini Kawasaki rider Jordi Torres will make up the third row of the grid.

Rea's works Kawasaki teammate Leon Haslam will join him on row four, the pair split by the factory Yamaha of Michael van der Mark.

Marco Melandri was eighth when he crashed at the Turn 2 right-hander in the dying minutes of the shoot-out, and was shuffled down to 13th by the time the chequered flag was waved.

Honda's Ryuichi Kiyonari fell at the same spot a minute later, and will star 17th.

Session results

Cla # Rider Bike Laps Time Gap
1 19 Spain Alvaro Bautista Ducati 10 1'49.049  
2 11 Germany Sandro Cortese Yamaha 8 1'49.414 0.365
3 66 United Kingdom Tom Sykes BMW 8 1'49.557 0.508
4 22 United Kingdom Alex Lowes Yamaha 7 1'49.563 0.514
5 21 Italy Michael Ruben Rinaldi Ducati 6 1'49.689 0.640
6 50 Ireland Eugene Laverty Ducati 9 1'49.722 0.673
7 28 Germany Markus Reiterberger BMW 9 1'49.779 0.730
8 7 United Kingdom Chaz Davies Ducati 9 1'49.970 0.921
9 81 Spain Jordi Torres Kawasaki 7 1'49.984 0.935
10 1 United Kingdom Jonathan Rea Kawasaki 8 1'50.013 0.964
11 60 Netherlands Michael van der Mark Yamaha 7 1'50.264 1.215
12 91 United Kingdom Leon Haslam Kawasaki 10 1'50.383 1.334
13 33 Italy Marco Melandri Yamaha 7 1'50.560 1.511
14 2 United Kingdom Leon Camier Honda 9 1'50.812 1.763
15 36 Argentina Leandro Mercado Kawasaki 9 1'50.822 1.773
16 54 Turkey Toprak Razgatlioglu Kawasaki 7 1'50.985 1.936
17 23 Japan Ryuichi Kiyonari Honda 9 1'52.716 3.667
18 52 Alessandro Delbianco Honda 8 1'52.769 3.720