Jorge Lorenzo will start on pole for the Portuguese MotoGP after topping the times in qualifying at the Estoril circuit yesterday.
The Yamaha rider secured his fourth consecutive pole at Estoril, at the expense of Italy's Marco Simoncelli and fellow Spaniard Dani Pedrosa.
Lorenzo, the reigning world champion, is off to a fast start in his title defence. He won in his home grand prix in Jerez and was second, behind Casey Stoner, in the season-opening race in Qatar.
He leads the overall standings by nine points over Honda's Pedrosa with another Honda rider, the Australian Stoner, who failed to finish in Jerez, 22 points back in third.
Despite his successful day, Lorenzo said it had not been an easy task to secure the top spot.
"I got pole by just a 10th in the end, managing five good laps with the softer tyre," he said.
"The most important thing is the race, though, not that I have 43 pole-position starts. This track is strange to ride on, quite old with lots of holes, so you have to ride with care.
He said he needed a good start today and also "to be focused, intelligent and to have good luck".
He added: "The bike is improving. It's much better in the fast corners, but we could be faster on the straight."
Stoner will start fourth, with Lorenzo's Yamaha teammate Ben Spies fifth.
The former champion Valentino Rossi could manage only ninth on his Ducati.
Lorenzo replaced Simoncelli, who suffered a late crash, at the head of the time sheet four minutes from the end of the hour-long session.
This was his first pole of the season, his 17th in MotoGP and the 43rd in his career.
The pole-position lap time of 1min 37.161secs was just over one tenth of a second faster than Simoncelli.