Ben Spies continued his perfect 2009 qualifying run by taking his third World Superpole pole in as many attempts with a record-breaking lap at Valencia on Saturday.
The rookie, winner of the last three races, suffered some kind of technical problem with his factory-backed Yamaha in Superpole 2 and had to switch to his spare bike. Nevertheless, Spies shot from eighth to first with one and a half minutes of the third and final Superpole session remaining.
The Texan's best lap time was a stunning 1min 33.270sec, smashing Max Neukirchner's 2008 pole record by over half a second to sit a massive 0.685sec clear of nearest rival Regis Laconi.
DFX Corse rider Laconi produced an admirable performance to be the leading Ducati rider, with championship leader Noriyuki Haga 0.812sec behind Spies in third on the factory 1198. Team-mate Michel Fabrizio will start on the outside of the front row in fourth.
Yukio Kagayama heads row two, ahead of Suzuki Alstare Brux team-mate Neukirchner, with rookie Jonathan Rea the lead Honda rider in seventh.
Hannspree Ten Kate Honda team-mate Carlos Checa, who clashed with leader Neukirchner at the final corner of race one at Valencia last season, will start in eighth place after a best lap over two-seconds slower than Spies.
Checa had crashed early in Superpole 2 and was using his spare bike.
Aprilia's Max Biaggi, fastest in Friday qualifying and Saturday free practice at Valencia, was among those eliminated in the very first phase of Saturday's knockout Superpole session.
Valencia Superpole 3:
Riders eliminated in Superpole 2:
Riders eliminated in Superpole 1: