By Lisa Lewis

Alex Rins continued his late assault for the Moto3 championship crown by securing his sixth pole of the season at Aragon on Saturday.

Overnight rain which had dampened the track for FP3 had dried by the time the Moto3 riders took to the track for qualifying at the Motorland circuit.

Times fell considerably, but only the top five riders could break the two minute barrier as reduced set-up and practice time hampered progress.

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Rins ruled the session, with the best laps for all riders coming as the clock neared zero. His best lap was the fastest by over 0.7 of a second. The consistent Spaniard continued to lower his benchmark time all the way to the flag.

The Estrella Galicia 0,0 KTM rider is currently 21 points behind championship leader Luis Salom, sitting third in the championship after just two finishes off the podium.

The only real challenge he had to overcome for pole came from a late charge by fellow title contender Maverick Vinales, which was answered by Rins shaving even more hundredths of his best time, even though he hit traffic, including troubled title leader Salom.

Vinales spent a large portion of his time in the pits having his bike changed back to Friday's settings after the changes made by the Team Calvo rider did not feel comfortable. The Spaniard used the final 20 minutes of track time to work through his issues, his late charge leading him to second on the grid.

KTM dominated, as has become the norm this year, with their bikes filling the top three positions.

Third went to Rins' rookie team-mate Alex Marquez, completing the front row.

The Kalex KTM of Philipp Oettl took fourth after a sensational, competitive performance by the German, by far his best qualifying to date for the Tec Interwetten team.

Mixing up the manufacturers a little was Efran Vazquez in fifth for Mahindra, though both he and Oettl were over 1.3 seconds of the pace of Rins.

Mapfre Aspar's Jonas Folger took sixth on the grid despite surgery this week following the crash in Misano which left him with a broken ankle, needing crutches to even get on the bike.

Mahindra rider Miguel Oiveira starts seventh, ahead of Red Bull KTM Ajo rider Salom, who will need to charge forward from eighth after a tough qualifying session for the Spaniard.

His team-mate Arthur Sissis completes the third row in ninth spot.

The closing seconds saw a very pleased Jakub Kornfeil sneak tenth for the Redox RW racing team.

Zulfahmi Khairuddin was the only crasher in the session but still managed to come back strongly to take eleventh.

Twelfth saw the first appearance on the timesheets for a Honda-powered rider. The dubious honour went to Ongetta-Rivacold's Alexis Masbou, just ahead of the next Honda - Romano Fenati in 13th.

Usually found putting in the top performance for Honda, Jack Miller found it to be a difficult session and starts from 20th for Caretta Technology-RTG.

Ana Carrasco finished qualifying in 16th for Team Calvo. She is joined by fellow female Maria Herrera - racing as a wild-card for Junior Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 - who starts from 31st on her Grand Prix debut.

The duo will be looking to challenge Carrasco's best finish of the season, currently 17th place, at a track they are both very familiar with when they become the first women to race each other in a grand Prix since 1994.

British rider John McPhee qualified 27th for Caretta Technonlogy-RTG.