Rea rises to the top after exciting FP3

Saturday, 5 July 2014 09:46 GMT

0.3s separate the top ten riders as times tumble in the Portuguese sunshine.

This morning’s FP3 held in sunny conditions at Portugal’s Portimao circuit provided 45 minutes of high speed action with all 27 riders improving their times and the top ten riders ending the session separated by less than 0.3s.

Pata Honda’s Jonathan Rea heads into this afternoon’s Tissot-Superpole as the fastest of the seeded riders after edging overnight fastest man Marco Melandri (Aprilia Racing Team) by 0.026s.

Melandri’s Aprilia team-mate Sylvain Guintoli improved significantly to end 3rd overall on combined time ahead of Eugene Laverty (Voltcom Crescent Suzuki) who is now riding with a thumb operated brake because of his still injured ankle.

Chaz Davies was the best of the official Ducati Panigale riders in 5th ahead of Loris Baz who was the top Kawasaki Racing Team representative after FP3.

Leon Haslam (Pata Honda World Superbike Team), Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team), Alex Lowes (Voltcom Crescent Suzuki) and Davide Giugliano (Ducati Superbike Team) complete the top ten riders who progress directly to Superpole 2 later today.

David Salom (Kawasaki Racing Team) took over the mantle of the fastest of the EVO riders in 11th, with the MV Agusta Reparto Corse machine of Claudio Corti who was a solid 12th.

Sheridan Morais (Iron Brain Grillini Kawasaki) was impressive once again in 13th and will be looking to take his best grid position this afternoon.

After yesterday’s challenging day both Team Hero EBR riders made it onto the grid in 24th and 26th respectively, improving massively.