Under normal circumstances Dani Pedrosa would be feeling confident after qualifying second on the grid for his home Spanish Grand Prix, and being first or second in every track session so far this weekend.

But at the back of his mind is the debilitating arm numbness that dropped him out of the victory battle and back to third during the opening round of the championship at Qatar.

The problem is related to the collarbone-plate Pedrosa had inserted after his accident at Motegi last October - the metalwork seems to be restricting an artery - and he will have the plate removed early next week.

Until then all he can do is try and save his shoulder from too much stress and hope for the best in the race.

In a repeat of Qatar qualifying, Pedrosa will start just behind Repsol Honda team-mate Casey Stoner and ahead of countryman Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha).

"To be on the front row is always very important and second is a good place to start the race. I would like to improve the bike a little bit, especially on the third section of the track, the only place where I lose some tenths, and it would help to have better braking and exit of the corners there," said Pedrosa.

"It's been tough with the shoulder - in fact this morning I decided to only do a few laps to not stress the arm so much - and it will be difficult also tomorrow, but there's nothing else I can do, I'll just try to finish the race in the best way possible and hopefully, bring home a good result.

"We need to see how the weather is tomorrow - perhaps it rains, but maybe it could be better for my shoulder".

Pedrosa, who has always finished on the podium at Jerez in the premier-class, lost out on victory to Lorenzo in the closing stages of last year's race.