Spaniard Marc Marquez has taken another step towards becoming the youngest ever MotoGP world champion as he took pole at the final Grand Prix of the season in Valencia.
MotoGP points leader Marc Marquez will start ahead of defending champion Jorge Lorenzo in the decisive Valencia Grand Prix after he won pole position in the qualifying session on Saturday.
He pushed his Honda through a flying lap in 1 minute, 30.237 seconds on the 4-kilometer Cheste Circuit, making sure Lorenzo will start Sunday's season finale from second place on the grid.
The 20-year-old was 0.113 seconds quicker than Lorenzo leads and leads his fellow Spanish competeter Lorenzo by 13 points entering the final race of the season.
Marquez had a wobble near the end of the session, and he said he took that as a sign of what could happen Sunday if he lets his guard down.
"I had a small scare on the last lap when I was a little relaxed and it made me see that I can't lose my concentration tomorrow,'' Marquez said.
"Jorge has a little more speed right now, but we will stay focused on our race.''
Lorenzo made a good start with a blistering first lap. But he returned to the paddock with four minutes left to change to another Yamaha, throwing his arm up in frustration as he got off his first bike.
"I was feeling confident going out with soft tires, but suddenly the bike stopped working well and lost half its power,'' Lorenzo said.
Lorenzo would defend the title if he wins the race and Marquez finishes fifth or worse.
"It's very tough with 13 points. They're a lot,'' Lorenzo said.
"Seeing Marc finish fifth or sixth or worse is difficult to imagine, but anything can happen so we have to be ready.''
Marquez needs a top-four finish to become the first rookie to win the championship since American Kenny Roberts in 1978.
Three-time winner in Valencia and Marquez' Honda team-mate Dani Pedrosa will also start on the front row, while seven-time champion and Lorenzo's Yamaha team-mate Valentino Rossi starts in fourth.
Marquez is favourite to make history on Sunday, but he has seen his lead whittled down by Lorenzo's late charge in recent weeks.
In Moto3, Alex Rins took pole position for Sunday's race, when he will duel with fellow Spaniards Luis Salom and Marc Vinales for the title.