Pedrosa on pole, Marquez in the gravel

Dani Pedrosa put his Honda up onto pole position for the Catalunya MotoGP on a day where his team-mate Marc Marquez crashed four times, twice in qualifying alone.

With the track temperature reaching a sweltering 55'C in some parts, the MotoGP riders faced a difficult afternoon at the Circuit de Catalunya in Saturday's qualifying.

While Jorge Lorenzo put in a 1:44.201 to take the top spot, Marquez lost the front end of his Honda through the high-speed Turn 3, sliding in the gravel.

He was able to remount and the reigning MotoGP champ, who crashed twice earlier in the day, returned to the pits while down in fifth place on the timesheets and with his number one bike under covers after earlier crash damage.

Pedrosa and Andrea Dovizioso were with Lorenzo on the provisional front row when the riders first runs were completed.

Pedrosa was the first to improve on the second run, jumping up to P1 with a 1:43.870. That put him 0.331s up on Lorenzo while Marquez went third.

With each of the front runners each having one more flying lap in hand, Marquez ruined his chances as he went down once again, this time at Turn 5.

His Honda team-mate Pedrosa secured pole position ahead of Lorenzo and Danilo Petrucci.

Marquez fell to fourth, qualifying ahead of Hector Barbera and Aleix Espargaro. Dovizioso, the winner last time out, qualified P7 with Jonas Folger, who had to come through Q1, eighth.

Both factory Yamaha riders were forced to take part in Q1 having lacked throughout the weekend. Surprisingly, only Maverick Vinales made it.

Valentino Rossi finished Q1 down in third place meaning the nine-time World Champion will start Sunday's Catalunya MotoGP in 13th place. Vinales, into Q2, qualified ninth.

Bradley Smith did not take part in qualifying after damaging the little finger on his left hand in FP4. He was declared unfit to compete.

Meanwhile Sylvain Guintoli sat out the qualifying session after feeling light-headed.

1 Dani PEDROSA Repsol Honda Team 1'43.870    
2 Jorge LORENZO Ducati Team 1'44.201 0.331
3 Danilo PETRUCCI OCTO Pramac Racing 1'44.220 0.350
4 Marc MARQUEZ Repsol Honda Team 1'44.320 0.450 
5 Aleix ESPARGARO Aprilia Racing Team Gresini 1'44.348 0.478
6 Hector BARBERA Reale Avintia Racing 1'44.381 0.511
7 Andrea DOVIZIOSO Ducati Team 1'44.451    0.581 
8 Jonas FOLGER Monster Yamaha Tech 3 1'44.600 0.730
9 Maverick VIÑALES Movistar Yamaha MotoGP 1'44.620     0.750 
10 Alvaro BAUTISTA Pull&Bear Aspar Team 1'44.740 0.870 
11 Scott REDDING OCTO Pramac Racing 1'44.852 0.982 
12 Andrea IANNONE Team SUZUKI ECSTAR  1'44.928 1.058
13 Valentino ROSSI Movistar Yamaha 1'44.661
14 Johann ZARCO Monster Yamaha Tech 3 1'44.681
15 Jack MILLER EG 0,0 Marc VDS Honda 1'44.829
16 Loris BAZ Reale Avintia Racing 1'44.919
17 Cal CRUTCHLOW LCR Honda 1'45.162
18 Karel ABRAHAM Pull&Bear Aspar Team 1'45.641
19 Tito RABAT EG 0,0 Marc VDS Honda 1'45.741
20 Pol ESPARGARO Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 1'45.887
21 Sam LOWES Aprilia Racing Team Gresini 1'48.803
Did not qualify
Bradley SMITH Red Bull KTM Factory Racing