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Tough opening day for Foggy PETRONAS Racing in France

The first day of qualifying of Foggy PETRONAS Racing's final outing in the Superbike World Championship at Magny-Cours in France provided a tough test for riders Steve Martin and Craig Jones.

Technical problems hindered afternoon progress after a promising morning, with Steve finishing in 21st following a minor crash and Craig in 25th as Noriyuki Haga set the early pace of 1:40.474.

Steve said: "Everything was going okay in the morning but the afternoon did not exactly go to plan. I lost the front end on my second lap, which was just one of those things. But it meant that I had to go out on my second bike, which is a different spec and did not feel as good, so we decided to fix my number one bike. I tried the tyre that was supposed to produce the better times but I think one of the other tyres that I had tried earlier will be better for doing times. We will have everything under control tomorrow and then I can set about getting the bike into Superpole if the weather stays fine."

Craig said: "I really like the track. It's nothing like Imola, where you have to just bite the screen and hold on. The surface is good and there are a lot of hairpins, which suits my style because I bring the bike to a halt well. So, considering it's my first time here and the fact that we had a few problems throughout the day, I'm not too far away. I did not make that much time up in the afternoon but I was more than a second up on one lap before I made a mistake in the final sector. After that we struggled to get the bike running properly and people were crashing in front of me so I wasn't able to improve. But I think I can easily get into the 42s in the morning and maybe even challenge for Superpole."

Superbike World Championship, round 12, Magny-Cours, France:

Friday qualifying times
1 Haga 1:40.474;
2 Toseland 1:40.734;
3 Lanzi 1:40.821;
4 Pitt 1:40.872;
5 Corser 1:40.936;
6 Kagayama 1:40.950;
7 Nieto 1:40.954;
8 Bayliss 1:41.006;
9 Muggeridge 1:41.044;
10 Barros 1:41.184;
21 Martin (Foggy PETRONAS Racing) 1:42.479;
25 Jones (Foggy PETRONAS Racing) 1:44.020

Free practice times:
1 Corser (Alstare Suzuki Corona Extra) 1:41.049;
2 Toseland (Winston Ten Kate Honda) 1:41.255;
3 Haga (Yamaha Italia) 1:41.312;
4 Bayliss (Ducati Xerox) 1:41.385;
5 Pitt (Yamaha Italia) 1:41.451;
6 Walker (PSG-1 Kawasaki) 1:41.531;
7 Muggeridge (Winston Ten Kate Honda) 1:41.609;
8 Nieto (PSG-1 Kawasaki) 1:41.796;
9 Gimbert (Yamaha France) 1:42.066;
10 Lanzi (Ducati Xerox) 1:42.085;
11 Martin (Foggy PETRONAS Racing) 1:42.202;
25 Jones (Foggy PETRONAS Racing) 1:44.561