Dovizioso, so desperately disappointed at his home race in Misano when his bike broke down, was a focused man coming out for the second quarter litre qualifying session. A 1min 40.355secs lap gave him the new pole record at the Estoril circuit, and was over a second quicker than Roberto Locatelli's previous fastest time from 2006.

By contrast, Lorenzo was the only rider in the top 18 unable improve on his times. The Spaniard was half a second slower this afternoon, but his fine ride yesterday assured another front row for the Aprilia star.

The session was incident-filled, as tempers heated up to accompany the Portuguese weather. Dovizioso gesticulated at 250cc rookie Karel Abraham when he adjudged the Czech rider to have come too close to him, whilst Lorenzo lashed out with a kick at Marco Simoncelli when trying to put in a fast lap.

The 250cc title leader also gave an important psychological boost to Dovizioso when undertaking his final hot lap, nearly losing the back of his bike right in front of the Italian.

Mika Kallio completes the front row as the highest placing KTM, ahead of Hiroshi Aoayma, Alvaro Bautista, Julian Simon and title contender Alex de Angelis.

Final qualifying - Estoril:

1. Dovizioso (Honda)
2. Lorenzo (Aprilia) +0.125secs
3. Barbera (Aprilia) +0.344secs
4. Kallio (KTM) +0.496secs
5. H. Aoyama (KTM) +0.501secs
6. Bautista (Aprilia) +0.529secs
7. Simon (Honda) +0.738secs
8. de Angelis (Aprilia) +0.745secs
9. Takahashi (Honda) +0.802secs
10. Luthi (Aprilia) +0.821secs

17. Laverty (Honda) +2.777secs
24. Linfoot (Aprilia) +4.184secs

DNQ Lawrence (Aprilia) +7.980secs