Casey Stoner took pole position ahead of MotoGP leader Jorge Lorenzo in a scorching qualifying session for the Catalunya Grand Prix on Saturday.
Stoner, who won at the Catalunya Circuit for the second time last year, set the quickest lap time of 1 minute, 41.295 seconds on his Ducati in high temperatures.
Lorenzo gave his home Spanish fans hope of victory on Sunday after filling the front row ahead of fellow Yamaha riders Cal Crutchlow of Britain and Ben Spies of the United States. Dani Pedrosa, who had been fastest in Saturday’s final practice, ran off the track on his Honda and will start fifth.
Lorenzo leads Stoner, the defending MotoGP champion, by eight points with Pedrosa 25 points behind the Spanish leader.
Spanish riders swept to pole position in the lower categories as Marc Marquez took pole in Moto2 and Maverick Vinales in the Moto3 race.
1. Casey Stoner, Australia, Honda, 1 minute, 41.295 seconds.
2. Jorge Lorenzo, Spain, Yamaha, 1:41.441.
3. Cal Crutchlow, Britain, Yamaha, 1:41.548.
4. Ben Spies, United States, Yamaha, 1:41.552.
5. Dani Pedrosa, Spain, Honda, 1:41.656.
6. Andrea Dovizioso, Italy, Yamaha, 1:41.687.
7. Nicky Hayden, United States, Ducati, 1:42.029.
8. Stefan Bradl, Germany, Honda, 1:42.065.
9. Valentino Rossi, Italy, Ducati, 1:42.175.
10. Alvaro Bautista, Spain, Honda, 1:42.356.