2010 125cc World Championship leader Nicolas Terol took his first ever grand prix pole position during qualifying at Le Mans on Saturday.

The Spaniard, a full time grand prix rider since 2005, took the prime starting spot by 0.145sec from nearest title rival Pol Espargaro, who heads into this weekend seven points behind the Aspar Aprilia rider.

Terol and team-mate Bradley Smith had both suffered technical problems in Friday practice, but while Terol made the perfect comeback, Smith was fast but fell late in the session - costing him a place on the front row.

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Instead, Sandro Cortese and Marc Marquez - who had been on pole for the first two rounds - will join Terol and Espargaro on row one.

Qualifying - Le Mans:

1. Terol (Aprilia) 1m 43.719s
2. Espargaro (Derbi) +0.145s
3. Cortese (Derbi) +0.399s
4. Marquez (Derbi) +0.422s
5. Smith (Aprilia) +0.453s
6. Koyama (Aprilia) +0.639s
7. Krummenacher (Aprilia) +0.861s
8. Webb (Aprilia) +1.088s
9. Zarco (Aprilia) +1.190s
10. Rabat (Aprilia) +1.201s