Clogher’s Keith Farmer conquered the tricky conditions at Donington Park on Friday to finish on top of the MCE British Superbike Championship time sheets for the first time.
The Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki rider was credited with the fastest lap in the wet by only 0.001 seconds from Samsung Honda’s Ryuichi Kiyonari, whose team-mate Alex Lowes was third quickest ahead of James Westmoreland (Buildbase BMW) and title favourite Shane ‘Shakey’ Byrne, 1.451s behind Ulsterman Farmer.
“That felt good to top that session, but it’s still early days as it’s only free practice,” said Farmer. “I still haven’t been feeling one hundred per cent so the wet makes it slightly better for me - although I’m sure nobody else will agree that they would like it the same tomorrow.”
Farmer, the reigning National Superstock 1000 champion, is currently 11th in the BSB standings ahead of Sunday’s round at Donington and retains a mathematical chance of progressing to the Showdown.
There was drama in the Supersport class as Carrick’s Alastair Seeley crashed in the first free practice session and was forced to sit out FP2 in the afternoon.
However, Seeley - who leads Mar-Train Racing’s Stuart Easton by 22 points - intends to compete in Saturday’s Sprint race.
Scot Easton was 13th fastest in the wet in FP2, while Glenn Irwin’s time on the Mar-Train Yamaha in FP1 left him second fastest overall.