Maverick Vinales claimed his second ever MotoGP pole as Yamaha riders filled the front row during a thrilling qualifying at Le Mans.

Vinales had led in the early stages of the 15-minute Q2 shootout, then knocked LCR Honda's Cal Crutchlow from pole by leaping from 7th to 1st at the end of the session.

Team-mate and title leader Valentino Rossi slotted into second place by 0.106s - despite Jack Miller falling just ahead of him - with the biggest cheer of the day for rookie Johann Zarco, who delighted his home fans by snatching third and a debut front row for the home Tech 3 team.

Zarco and Andrea Dovizioso had fought their way into Qualifying 2 by beating the likes of Dani Pedrosa and Jorge Lorenzo in Q1.


Crutchlow remained the top Honda rider in fourth (+0.306s), with reigning champion Marc Marquez falling (again) on his way to fifth. Dovizioso was the top Ducati in sixth, completing row two.

Row three will consist of Scott Redding, Pol Espargaro and Karel Abraham while Bradley Smith, Jack Miller and Loris Baz form row four.

Espargaro and team-mate Smith delighted KTM by claiming direct access to Qualifying 2, while Miller was lucky just to be on track after a colossal 300km/h accident in final practice.

Marquez's Repsol Honda team-mate and Jerez winner Dani Pedrosa was shocked to lose out to Zarco at the very end of Qualifying 1 and will line-up in 13th, with Lorenzo starting just 16th.

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Qualifying 2:
1. Maverick Vi?ales
2. Valentino Rossi
3. Johann Zarco
4. Cal Crutchlow
5. Marc Marquez
6. Andrea Dovizioso
7. Scott Redding
8. Pol Espargaro
9. Karel Abraham
10. Bradley Smith
11. Jack Miller
12. Loris Baz

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