The quickfire MotoGP Q2 session saw Jorge Lorenzo take pole at the Gran Premio TIM di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini, with Andrea Iannone and Valentino Rossi also securing front row slots.
At a track where he has a phenomenal record – with three wins in his last three visits – Lorenzo (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) sped around the Misano layout with a 1’33.238 lap time to grab his first pole since Motegi 2013.
Just 0.051s behind Lorenzo, Iannone (Pramac Racing) matched his best ever MotoGP qualifying result, despite a fall on Friday which saw him take a heavy ankle knock.
Completing the front row at his home track, nine time World Champion Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) qualified in third – his best grid result since he was also third in Australia last season.
Meanwhile, for the first time this season World Champion Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda) qualified off the front row, lapping 0.122s down on Lorenzo’s pole time in fourth place.
On the other side of the Repsol Honda garage Dani Pedrosa slotted his RC213V into fifth spot on the grid, with a time just 0.058s slower than that of Marquez.
A further 0.021s margin behind Pedrosa, Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) completed the second row.
The third row of the grid for Sunday’s round 13 contest will comprise brothers Pol Espargaro (Monster Yamaha Tech3), Aleix Espargaro (NGM Forward Racing) and Englishman Bradley Smith (Monster Yamaha Tech3).
Stefan Bradl (LCR Honda MotoGP) heads row four in tenth following a crash in the session which he escaped unharmed. The German had made it through from Q1 along with Yonny Hernandez (Energy T.I. Pramac Racing) who qualified 11th, just in front of Alvaro Bautista (GO&FUN Honda Gresini).