Bautista originally uttered early pacesetter Alex Lowes (Yamaha) at the 25-minute session, before bolting at a 1m32.718s flyer to move to the top of the time sheets.

He managed to shave off another tenth on his next lap, finishing the first qualifying run smoothly quicker compared to the rest of the area.

The Spanish rider managed to get yet more time afterwards returning to the trail with 10 minutes to proceed, clocking a time of 1m31.912so to further extend his benefit.

Rea improved significantly in the final sector in a effort to replicate his Phillip Island heroics, but fell 0.429s in short supply of dislodging Bautista from rod position.

Lowes chose a overdue addition of their own to secure the final area on the front , while World Supersport graduate Sandro Cortese (GRT Yamaha) impressed to adapt fourth in just his second WSBK weekend.

Qualifying consequences: