Johann Zarco made a superb early push when track conditions were at their best to claim the pole time for the Moto2 Grand Prix of Misano.
The Frenchman's lap of 1m 37.436s was set with over half a hour left of the session and though other riders found improvements his pole time remained unchallenged.
The Ajo Motorsport rider will now look to repeat his pole-to-win form at the track in 2015, as he seeks to rebuild his points lead following the Silverstone penalty.
Taka Nakagami had dominated practice, topping all three sessions, but fell just short in qualifying for Idemitsu, taking second as Zarco's closest rival.
Lorenzo Baldassarri could still find red sector times on his Forward racing machine as the clock ticked down, but could not hook up a consistent lap, leaving him third, equalling his best qualifying this season.
In contrast to the calm Zarco, Sam Lowes - the rider he clashed with at Silverstone - had to hassle his way to fourth on the grid, but was closer to the top time than he had been all weekend.
Franco Morbidelli enjoyed a strong performance after making a great save on the EG 0,0 Marc VDS team in fifth, with British Grand Prix winner Tom Luthi joining him on row two after earning a sixth place start.
Sandro Cortese pushed hard to secure seventh for Dynavolt Intact GP, with the still recovering Alex Rins pushing even harder, with a trip through the gravel for Paginas Amarillas HP40 on his way to eighth at the track where he was shown the black flag in 2015.
Italtrans veteran Mattia Pasini and Petronas Raceline Malaysia's Hafizh Syahrin complete the top ten in ninth and tenth respectively.
Danny Kent could only manage 15th for Leopard but qualified ahead of his team-mate Miguel Oliveira who was 22nd – he also missed out on being top rookie in the session by one place to Forward's Luca Marini.
Injured Dominique Aegerter's replacement Iker Lecuona gave us the rare sight of a flat tyre in grand prix racing on his way to 24th for Interwetten.
Remy Gardner was the first to fall but remounted, with wild-card Federico Fuligni (Team Ciatti) next to crash in the session after losing the front. Marcel Schrotter was the only other faller, waiting until the final minute and possibly costing him a top ten start.