Cal Crutchlow secured his fifth front row start of the season following an impressive performance during qualifying at Misano this afternoon.

The MotoGP star was in sizzling form on the Tech 3 Yamaha and looked poised to earn a pole position start on the satellite machine until he was overhauled in the dying seconds.

Factory Yamaha ace Jorge Lorenzo and his key title challenger, Repsol Honda's Dani Pedrosa, both squeezed ahead of the British rider with less than two minutes on the clock.

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Nonetheless, it was an exceptional display by Crutchlow, who will now expect to challenge for his second career MotoGP finish at the San Marino Grand Prix tomorrow after he achieved the feat at Brno last time out.

The Coventry man had only completed 10 laps at Misano prior to qualifying this afternoon, after sitting out yesterday's weather-affected free practice sessions.

His best lap of 1m 34.001s was a mere 0.144s behind works Repsol Honda rider Pedrosa's pole time and Crutchlow is oozing confidence ahead of the 28-lap showdown in Italy.

"I am really happy to be on the front row again and I am particularly pleased for my Yamaha Tech 3 crew because they did a fantastic job in giving me a great bike, despite the lack of time on track," he said.

"To be honest I felt a bit rusty because after missing the whole of yesterday's practice with the weather, Brno felt like a long time ago.

"The start of the session was quite difficult and I was struggling for rear grip. I spoke to Jorge and he said he was also having an issue getting temperature into the tyre but every minute the track was getting better and the grip was improving.

"I'm happy to be on the front row and I am fast in all parts of the track," added Crutchlow.

"If my four best sector times were put together I'd have been in pole position."

The 26-year-old is expecting a difficult race, in particular as a result of the lack of dry set-up time available prior to final qualifying.

However, that has failed to dampen Crutchlow's enthusiasm as he aims to pick up where he left off in Brno at Misano tomorrow.

"It is going to be a hard race because nobody has had the chance to properly work on their dry set-up, but I am really looking forward to it.

"I am feeling really confident after scoring my first podium in Brno and the good thing is we have carried that momentum to here," said Crutchlow.

"Hopefully we can put on a good show for all the fans that turned up yesterday and this morning when not a lot was happening on track."