The Brit went top of the timesheets after 15 minutes and stayed there throughout with a best lap of 1’58.957.
The session was red flagged with less than four minutes remaining when Pata Honda’s Leon Haslam crashed on turn seven. He was taken to the medical centre with a leg injury.
The Brit was having a solid time out on track until that point, finishing the session fifth fastest with a time of 2’01.112.
Aprilia Racing’s Sylvain Guintoli managed to complete 11 laps of the Assen circuit, but could not manage to get to go as fast as Sykes and he set a lap time of 1’59.438.
GoldBet BMW team-mates Chaz Davies and Marco Melandri were setting equally fast lap times, but it was the Italian who proved to be just that little bit quicker - with a time of 1’59.696 - closely followed by Welshman Davies who was fourth fastest with a time of 2’00.728.
Injured Fixi Crescent Suzuki rider Leon Camier had a steady, progressive session after he was passed fit to race on Thursday. The Kent rider was just inside the top 20 times, but in the final minutes managed to make his way to eighth on the timesheets. He was just behind French team-mate Jules Cluzel, but in front of Ducati Alstare rider Carlos Checa.
Aprilia Racing’s Eugene Laverty just narrowly missed being in the top 10, ending the session in 11th. But because of the wet conditions out on track, not every rider managed to get as many lap times completed as they wanted.
Pata Honda’s Jonathan Rea did manage to get out on track, but quickly came in as the weather conditions worsened.
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