Giugliano grabs dramatic Portimao pole

Ducati’s Davide Giugliano grabbed the 5th pole position of his career at Portimao with a storming lap of 1’41.764 ahead of Kawasaki’s Tom Sykes and team-mate Chaz Davies.

Sykes looked set to grab pole position as he crossed the line with a phenomenal 1’41.880 to record the quickest time of the weekend but Giugliano snatched pole from his grasp just eight bike lengths later as the Italian made the most of a tow from the unaware Brit.

Championship leader Jonathan Rea could only manage eighth place as the Northern Irishman crashed out with 10 minutes to go in the session.

Rea sat top of the standings before losing the front end of his Kawasaki at turn three and to compound the Ulsterman’s woes Aprilia’s Leon Haslam grabbed pole just seconds later with a lap of 1’42.891.

Haslam remained on course for a second pole of the year as the paddock re-emerged from pit-lane after the tyre change as the 32-year-old set a whopping 1’42.217.

But Davies took provisional pole just half a lap later from Haslam with a 1’42.123 before Giugliano dramatically took pole from under Sykes’ nose with a minute remaining in the session and the Italian wouldn’t be beaten.

Davies will start Sunday’s action from third while Haslam was dislodged to fifth after an impressive lap from Suzuki’s Alex Lowes with the Brit progressed through from Superpole One to grab fourth place.

Ducati’s Matteo Baiocco will start sixth with reigning World Champion and Pata Honda rider Sylvain Guintoili seventh.

Championship leader Rea remained eight after the Ulsterman’s uncharacteristic crash with Aprilia’s Jordi Torres and BMW’s Ayrton Badovini starting from ninth and tenth.

Argentine Leandro Mercado ended eleventh after progressing with Lowes from Superpole One with Davide Salom twelfth.

Grid position determined by SP2
1. Davide Giugliano ITA Racing Ducati 1199R 1m 41.764s
2. Tom Sykes GBR Kawasaki Racing ZX-10R 1m 41.880s
3. Chaz Davies GBR Racing Ducati 1199R 1m 42.123s
4. Alex Lowes GBR Voltcom Crescent Suzuki GSX-R1000 1m 42.198s
5. Leon Haslam GBR Red Devils Roma Aprilia RSV4 1m 42.217s
6. Matteo Baiocco ITA Althea Ducati 1199R 1m 42.468s
7. Sylvain Guintoli FRA PATA Honda CBR1000RR 1m 42.641s
8. Jonathan Rea GBR Kawasaki Racing ZX-10R 1m 42.902s
9. Jordi Torres ESP Red Devils Roma Aprilia RSV4 1m 42.975s
10. Ayrton Badovini ITA BMW Italia S1000RR 1m 43.067s
11. Leandro Mercado ARG Barni Ducati 1199R 1m 43.327s
12. David Salom ESP Pedercini Kawasaki ZX-10R 1m 43.609s

Grid positions determined by SP1
13. Michael van der Mark NED PATA Honda CBR1000RR 1m 43.272s
14. Leon Camier GBR MV Agusta F4 RR 1m 43.468s
15. Roman Ramos ESP GO Eleven Kawasaki ZX-10R1m 43.488s
16. Randy de Puniet FRA Voltcom Crescent Suzuki GSX-R1000 1m 44.273s
17. Nico Terol ITA Althea Ducati 1199R 1m 44.992s
18. Christophe Ponsson FRA Pedercini Kawasaki ZX-10R 1m 45.066s
19. Santiago Barragan ESP Grillini Kawasaki ZX-10R 1m 45.640s
20. Niccolo Canepa ITA Grillini Kawasaki ZX-10R 1m 45.674s