Casey Stoner, Jorge Lorenzo and Dani Pedrosa - who will form the front row for this afternoon's San Marino MotoGP - repeated their qualifying positions in morning warm-up.
Honda's championship leader Stoner moved 0.240sec ahead of title rival Lorenzo in the final two minutes, with Pedrosa just 0.051sec further back - confirming a potential three-way victory fight, should the weather remain dry.
Marco Simoncelli gave the home fans hope with fourth place (+0.465sec) for Honda Gresini, while the cooler morning conditions helped Ducati's Nicky Hayden - who has qualified just 15th on the grid - set the fifth fastest time (quicker than in qualifying).
Rizla Suzuki's Alvaro Bautista, riding in a special livery, confirmed his top six potential (+0.990sec) while fellow Spaniard Hector Barbera was a competitive seventh for the Aspar Team, but not the top Ducati for the first time this weekend.
Lorenzo's Factory Yamaha team-mate Ben Spies, fourth on the grid, was only eighth this morning (+1.061sec). Likewise, sixth on the grid Andrea Dovizioso could only manage twelfth (1.326sec).
Local hero Valentino Rossi couldn't replicate team-mate Hayden's dramatic progress and was just 14th quickest (+1.470sec). Rossi will start from eleventh on the grid.
16. de Puniet