CIA Landlord Insurance Honda’s Jules Cluzel took pole position in the World Supersport Tissot Superpole 2 at the Chang International Circuit with a blistering lap of 1’37.683 in the equally scorching track conditions.
Despite the injury he suffered in the crash at the previous round in Australia; Frenchman Cluzel displayed his determination and grit to record the quickest lap of the weekend; and the first pole position for the team under the CIA Landlord Insurance banner.
Jules said: “I am really happy with this qualifying. The first lap I did I was 5th with a 38.4 but I felt really comfortable and strong. When I came in I said to my crew that I have the 37 in my hand but I wasn’t expecting 37.6. It was not so difficult; I could push as much as I can, which I like to do. Most important is the race tomorrow, we have a good race pace and I need to concentrate and ride an intelligent race. I want to thank my crew because I have the best bike I can have for the race tomorrow.”
Hikari Okubo will start the race from 8th position on the grid and is seeking a top six finish in tomorrow’s 17-lap race.
Robin Mulhauser improved once again in the Superpole 1 session getting into the 38s for the first time this weekend. He qualified in 15th position and is looking to challenge well inside the points at his first visit to the Chang International Circuit.
CIA Landlord Insurance Honda Team Manager, Simon Buckmaster said: “What can I say other than what an absolutely fantastic job by Jules and the whole team. That was a great last lap especially as he had to overtake someone and make time in the last sector to be over four tenths of a second clear. He has got good race pace and is in superb shape to challenge for victory tomorrow; I couldn’t ask for more.
Hikari did a good job today; he is still losing a bit of time in the last sector so we will look at how we can improve that for the race tomorrow. Robin has got faster all weekend and we are hoping for a points finish for him in the race.”
The lights go out for the World Supersport race in Thailand at 14:30 (local time) at the Chang International Circuit.
Results Superpole 1
- F. Caricasulo 1’38.324
- Z. Khairuddin + 0.030
- N. Tuuli +0.144
- S. Morais + 0.317
- R. Mulhauser CIA Landlord Insurance Honda +0.465
- A. Wagner + 0.555
- M. Canducci +0.558
- T. Warokorn +0.612
- K. Watanabe +0.848
- L. Epis +0.300
Free Practices & Superpole Combined Results
- J. Cluzel CIA Landlord Insurance Honda 1’37.683
- C. Polami 1’38.130
- L. Mahias 1’38.156
- D. Kraisart 1’38.182
- Z. Khairuddin 1’38.205
- K. Smith 1’38.226
- F. Caricasulo 1’38.290
- H. Okubo CIA Landlord Insurance Honda 1’38.349
- C. Gamarino 1’38.436
- K. Ryde 1’38.481
- R. Mulhauser CIA Landlord Insurance Honda 1’38.789