Filip Salac set the pace early in the session and then saw his lap stay at the top of the timesheets to claim pole position ahead of the Moto3 German Grand Prix, round eight of the championship.
The Rivacold Snipers team beat the heat by borrowing some of the Sky Racing VR46 pit space, which allowed the Czech rider the best chance to compose himself.
The 1m 26.913s lap came right as the session started, but conditions at the hot, sticky Sachsenring ensured it was not bettered, leaving Salac on pole for the first time in his world championship career, following a previous best qualifying of sixth – which he celebrated with a wheelie downhill.
Dennis Foggia, who won just two rounds ago in Italy before a DNF last time out, continued his up and down season by moving into second around the halfway mark for Leopard, where he too remained, 0.183s off the pole time.
Tatsuki Suzuki cooled off between runs over in the shadow behind pit wall and rallied for a final run which saw him climb to third for SIC58 Squadra Corse, completing an all Honda front row.
Darryn Binder had been sitting comfortably at the top of Q1 and looked set to sit out the final part of the session. A late change of plan saw him leave the pits and head straight into the flying run of replacement rider Joel Kelso, with the South African coming off worst after his flip through the gravel left his mechanics a lot of work ahead of Q2.
Binder’s move was placed under investigation by race direction and the Petronas Sprinta rider was quickly shown him the black flag after his Q2 pit exit, calling him back in for irresponsible riding.
A late crash for Kaito Toba brought out the yellow flags, which slowed John McPhee’s final lap, then estimated to lift him onto the front row.
The Petronas Sprinta rider, despite his crew chief internal team issues, had been fastest on Friday and still managed to show enough pace for fourth.
Before his tumble, Toba had put in a lap good enough for fifth for CIP Green Power and was also the highest qualifying KTM.
Sixteen year old rookie Lorenzo Fellon shone in a strong showing by the novices. The Avintia Esponsorama rider improved his best qualifying to date by ten places to claim sixth.
Experience followed with his team-mate Niccolo Antonelli in seventh and Romano Fenati ( Sterligarda Max Racing Team) securing eighth on the grid.
Stefano Nepa continued to show improvements too, building on a top ten finish last round with ninth in qualifying for BOR Owlride.
Andrea Migno completed the top ten on the second Snipers entry.
Hoping to build on his first podium finish in Barcelona, after an impressive Q1 Deniz Oncu fell at the start of Q2. His Red Bull KTM Tech 3 mechanics got him out on track with five minutes remaining, leaving him to run solo as he did successfully to move into second in the first half of qualifying.
The Turkish rider did not quite repeat the feat but did improve to eleventh at the chequered flag.
Rookie Izan Guevara will line up in twelfth as the top Gas Gas rider for Gaviota Aspar.
The Spaniard is ahead of championship leader Pedro Acosta (Red Bull KTM Ajo) in 13th and Catalunya Race winner, his team-mate Sergio Garcia in 14th.
As the rookies begin to find their feet, several well known names failed to make it out of Q1.
With Yuki Kunii finishing the session fourth Gabriel Rodrigo was pushed back to fifth, ending his day and leaving him ninth on the grid after running wide on his final flying lap previously. Kunii went on to qualify 16th.
Second on the grid and in the race in Catalunya, Jeremy Alcoba will be one place further pack after having to pull out of his final attempt behind the Argentine.
Joel Kelso had an all-action world championship debut after his contact with Binder. Unable to put in a final run left Max Kofler’s replacement at CIP Green Power 24th.
Elia Bartolini returns to replace Carlos Tatay again in Germany. He starts from 25th on the grid.