While team-mate and pole sitter Casey Stoner is 'unreachable', Dani Pedrosa believes he has the necessary pace to fight with title rival Jorge Lorenzo in Sunday's Australian MotoGP.
Pedrosa, 23-points behind Lorenzo despite winning five of the last six races, effectively needs to beat Lorenzo at Phillip Island to take the Championship down to the Valencia finale.
Home star Stoner qualified 0.517s ahead of Yamaha's Lorenzo, with Pedrosa 0.952s from pole. But Pedrosa doesn't feel he was able to show his full potential.
"I was trying some different things on the bike to get a little more comfortable, but they didn't work out very well for the middle of the session,” said the Repsol Honda star.
“On my first soft rear tyre I couldn't improve and then on my last run I was going quicker on the first lap and rain arrived.
“Anyway to be on the front row again is very good and I think we found a good bike setting for tomorrow's race.
“Casey is unreachable, he's on another level and doing an amazing job this weekend, but my pace is quite similar to Jorge's, so I hope to be at least constant for the fight with him".