Scott Redding stormed to his fifth front row start of 2012 in physically and mentally draining conditions at the Sepang International Circuit in Malaysia this afternoon.
The Marc VDS Racing rider took second on the grid behind Pol Espargaro with a best time of 2.07.399 to clinch his best qualifying result of the year.
The 19-year-old was 0.437s off Espargaro’s impressive pace, with the Spaniard the only rider to dive under the 2.07 barrier with a best lap of 2.06.962.
Redding, who signed a new one-year deal with the Marc VDS Racing squad for the 2013 Moto2 world championship earlier this week, finished 0.167s ahead of title favourite Marc Marquez to clinch his third front row start in the last five races.
Redding was the only rider to lap within 0.5s of Espargaro, with Marquez 0.604s of his main title rival.
Bradley Smith produced a heroic ride to claim a place on the second row in sixth after a heavy crash yesterday left him with two broken toes on his left foot.
The Tech 3 Racing Team rider set a best time of 2.07.721 to finish just over 0.2s behind Marquez in third.
Gino Rea will start the 19-lap race from 22nd on the grid. The Londoner set a best time of 2.09.021 to finish just over two seconds behind the fastest pace.