BSB Championship leader Tommy Hill was in devastating form on Saturday at Oulton Park as he comfortably set the pace.
On his return to the circuit where his championship hopes were dashed last year, the Lingfield rider set a blistering pace with his lap time of 1:35.682 seven tenths quicker than anyone else.
Ominously for his rivals, Hill claimed there was still pace to find in his YZF-R1 despite his pace in practice.
“That was good for me as we used the same tyre and I guess a lot of people are looking and thinking we popped in a softer tyre to go for a time,” explained Hill. “We had been fairly consistent across both sessions and we still have a few things to work on ahead of qualifying and these races.”
Michael Laverty followed up his teammate in second and is hopeful of closing the gap to Hill in tomorrow's qualifying session.
“It always takes me time to comfortable at this circuit as it is hard work to ride, but every lap was getting a bit better for me. So with the changes we can make, I am feeling good,” he said.
After a painful start to the season at Brands Hatch, Josh Brookes was straight on the pace for Relentless Suzuki. The Australian was a tenth fastest than Hill in FP1 and was best of the rest behind the Swan Yamaha duo in FP2, just ahead of French youngster Loris Baz.
Stuart Easton and Gary Mason were fifth and sixth for MSS Colchester Kawasaki ahead of Crescent Racing's Jon Kirkham but HM Plant Honda were almost a second and a half off the pace. Ryuichi Kiyonari and Shane 'Shakey' Byrne were eighth and ninth for the reigning champions while Peter Hickman completed the top ten for TYCO Honda.
John Hopkins was 12th on the second Crescent Suzuki while Tommy Bridewell was brought back down to earth after his podium at Brands. The Wiltshire man finished down in 19th after an accident.