Jorge Lorenzo struck a seagull on his first run - taking the deceased bird to provisional pole, before having it removed from the radiator of his YZR-M1 in the pits!
Marc Marquez then moved ahead, before Lorenzo fought back with the first ever sub-1m 28s lap.
Phillip Island has been resurfaced since last year's event - after Friday practice, Bridgestone specified that all riders must use the harder rear for the race due to increased tyre wear.
However the short qualifying shootout meant that the softer rear was used without issue.
Honda LCR's Stefan Bradl has withdrawn after testing his newly fractured ankle in Friday morning practice.
Yonny Hernandez continues to replace Ben Spies at Pramac Ducati, with Damian Cudlin taking over from Hernandez at PBM and World Supersport-ace Scassa replacing the injured Karel Abraham at Cardion AB.
for pictures from the grand prix...
1. Jorge Lorenzo
ESP Yamaha Factory Racing (YZR-M1) 1m 27.899s
2. Marc Marquez
ESP Repsol Honda Team (RC213V) 1m 28.120s
3. Valentino Rossi
ITA Yamaha Factory Racing (YZR-M1) 1m 28.647s
4. Alvaro Bautista
ESP Go&Fun Honda Gresini (RC213V) 1m 28.713s
5. Dani Pedrosa
ESP Repsol Honda Team (RC213V) 1m 28.748s
6. Cal Crutchlow
GBR Monster Yamaha Tech 3 (YZR-M1) 1m 28.809s
7. Bradley Smith
GBR Monster Yamaha Tech 3 (YZR-M1) 1m 28.941s
8. Nicky Hayden
USA Ducati Team (GP13) 1m 29.295s
9. Andrea Dovizioso
ITA Ducati Team (GP13) 1m 29.660s
10. Andrea Iannone
ITA Energy T.I. Pramac Racing (GP13) 1m 29.756s
11. Colin Edwards
USA NGM Forward Racing (FTR-Kawasaki CRT)* 1m 30.264s
12. Randy De Puniet
FRA Power Electronics Aspar (ART CRT) 1m 30.735s
13. Aleix Espargaro
ESP Power Electronics Aspar (ART CRT) 1m 30.081s
14. Claudio Corti
ITA NGM Forward Racing (FTR-Kawasaki CRT)* 1m 30.530s
15. Yonny Hernandez
COL Ignite Pramac Racing (GP13) 1m 30.641s
16. Hiroshi Aoyama
JPN Avintia Blusens (FTR-Kawasaki CRT)* 1m 30.733s
17. Danilo Petrucci
ITA Came IodaRacing Project (Suter-BMW CRT)* 1m 30.894s
18. Michael Laverty
GBR Paul Bird Motorsport (ART CRT) 1m 30.979s
19. Hector Barbera
ESP Avintia Blusens (FTR-Kawasaki CRT)* 1m 31.061s
20. Luca Scassa
ITA Cardion AB Motoracing (ART CRT) 1m 31.093s
21. Bryan Staring
AUS Go&Fun Honda Gresini (FTR-Honda CRT) 1m 31.775s
22. Lukas Pesek
CZE Came IodaRacing Project (Suter-BMW CRT)* 1m 32.474s
23. Damian Cudlin
AUS Paul Bird Motorsport (PBM-ART CRT)* 1m 33.007s
* Standard ECU.
Fastest practice time:
ESP Honda 1m 28.959s
Official Australian MotoGP records:
AUS Ducati 1m 28.665s
Fastest race lap:
USA Honda1m 30.059s
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