Alex Rins clung on to Moto3 pole position for Italian Moto3 as both he and his Estrella Galicia mechanics impressed - returning him to the track to defend his time after a front end washout at turn two looked to have ended his session.

The Spaniard's time of 1m 56.999 was the fastest ever lap by a Moto3 bike at Mugello, with Rins able to return to the track following an incredible eight minute turnaround for crash repairs in the pits.

In near perfect conditions, times were expected to tumble but traffic played a big part in the close closing stages of qualifying.

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Jack Miller maintains his perfect front row record for the season in second on the grid. The Australians efforts were repeatedly thwarted by huge swarms of riders grouping round him which he described as a 'car park'.

The championship leader had almost half grid behind his Red Bull KTM Ajo bike looking for an advantage with even a trip through the pits ineffectual for Miller as her was followed in by a stream of bikes.

Jakub Kornfeil impressed with timing and luck affording him enough gap to get the most from his Team Calvo bike, his momentum handing the Czech rider a career first front row start in third.

Kornfeils last lap improvement denied Sky Racing Team VR46 a home front row as Romano Fenati was pushed down to fourth on the grid as the huge pack of riders circulating continued to trip each other up meaning late fast laps were limited.

The experienced Alexis Masbou secured fifth for the Ongetta-Rivacold team with the second row completed by the second of the Estrella Galicia riders, Alex Marquez in sixth.

Further down the grid Karel Hanika gave his best qualifying performance to date to secure seventh for the Ajo team.

The rookie is joined on the third row by Mafre Aspar rider Juanfran Guevara Iin eighth and Brad Binder who impressed on his Mahindra for ninth, seemingly rid of the transmission issues that have troubled the Indian manufacturer all season.

Tenth went to Le Mans frontrunner Efren Vazquez, one place ahead of his SaxoPrint-RTG team-mate John McPhee, who after a slow start improved courtesy of a string of personal best laps followed by a tow from Vazquez.

Danny Kent struggled on his Red Bull Husqvarna and is towards the back of the grid in a disappointing 26th place.

Jules Danilo's highside saw his Ambrogio Mahindra run him over, though the Frenchman walked away unharmed as Rins followed him into the gravel for the only other crash in the session.