Jacobsen the pole man at Phillip Island

Saturday, 25 February 2017 03:26 GMT

Tissot Superpole 2 sees American on top, joined on row one by Cluzel and Caricasulo

At the Yamaha Finance Australian Round at Phillip Island on Saturday it was PJ Jacobsen (MV Agusta Reparto Corse) who took WorldSSP pole with a 1’33.128 best time.

In the brilliant Australian sunshine on the Bass Straight, Jules Cluzel (CIA Landlord Insurance Honda) and Federico Caricasulo (GRT Yamaha Official WorldSSP Team) got closest to Jacobsen to qualify in second and third respectively, both riders just over a tenth behind the American.

A crash for Caricasulo late in the session meant he was unable to challenge for pole in the final minutes.

Just off the front row is Kyle Ryde (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) who will line up fourth on the grid ahead of Lucas Mahias (GRT Yamaha Official WorldSSP Team) and Alex Baldolini (Race Department ATK#25) on the second row.

The third row features Gino Rea (Team Kawasaki Go Eleven), Roberto Rolfo (Team Factory Vamag) and Kyle Smith (GEMAR Team Lorini). Meanwhile, Hikari Okubo (CIA Landlord Insurance Honda), Luke Stapleford (Profile Racing) and Michael Canducci (Puccetti Racing Junior Team FMI) are on row four.

Okubo crashed mid way through Tissot Superpole 2 and ended up 10th on the grid. Kawasaki ZX-6R equipped pair Ryde and Canducci were the two riders to graduate from Tissot Superpole 1.

Zulfahmi Khairuddin (Orelac Racing VerdNatura) crashed at the end of Tissot Superpole 1 at turn 2, leaving him in 13th on the grid.

Defending WorldSSP World Champion Kenan Sofuoglu (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) is absent this weekend having sustained a hand injury during pre-season, so there is an opportunity for his rivals to take advantage in Sunday’s first race of the season which starts at 1.30pm local time.