Fabio Quartararo shot to his second consecutive Jerez MotoGP pole in a messy qualifying session that saw three riders crash on their final flyers.
The Frenchman came out swinging early on in Q2 as he pipped provisional pole-man Marc Marquez to the top spot by just 0.016.
Marquez then looked to have pole sewn up as he lit up the timing screens on his final all-or-nothing efforts, besting Quartararo by just over a tenth on his penultimate flyer.
He looked to be going even quicker on his final gambit, but lost over two-and-a-half tenths in the final sector to remain second behind Maverick Vinales, who had squeaked ahead of the Honda man just moments earlier.
Quartararo was not finished though, and on his final tour fired back to the head of the timesheets with a 1:36.705, which was enough to claim the first pole of the 2020 MotoGP season by just 0.139 over Vinales on his factory Yamaha.
Marquez had to make do with third to complete the front row, while Francesco Bagnaia impressed with the fourth quickest time for his Pramac Ducati outfit-the Italian just 0.250 away from Quartararo’s pole lap.
Jack Miller was next up on the second Pramac machine-albeit half-a-second away from his team-mate- despite a crash on his final flying effort, which saw him joined in the Turn 11 gravel trap by the Suzuki of Alex Rins.
Cal Crutchlow continued to display the solid speed he’s shown all weekend with sixth on the grid for LCR, just ahead of Pol Espargaro’s KTM-the Spaniard heading the third row despite having to contest Q1.
Espargaro ultimately managed the second quickest time in the first session, losing out to Rins who managed to slot his GSX-RR just under two-tenths clear of the RC16 and denying Brad Binder a Q2 slot in the South Africans maiden premier class qualifying session.
Andrea Dovizioso was another to crash out on his final lap-although remains eighth on the grid-with Rins following just behind.
Franco Morbidelli struggled to match the speed of his Petronas SRT team-mate and wound up down in tenth-nearly a second off Quartararo- while Valentino Rossi and Joan Mir completed the top 12.
Danilo Petrucci meanwhile completed a frustrating day for the factory Ducati team by managing just 14th on the grid behind Binder, while Aleix Espargaro struggled for pace on the new Aprilia RS-GP down in 16th.
Johann Zarco crashed on his final Q1 lap to end the session 10th, meaning he’ll start 20th in tomorrow’s Spanish grand prix just ahead of Alex Marquez and Iker Lecuona.