The two first year stars Raúl Fernández and Ayumu Sasaki sit on the front row but it was still Cup leader Bo Bendsneyder who took pole position with his fastest lap of the race, leaving it until the last sector in fact to jump ahead of Sasaki by two tenths.
Fernández left it even later and with a last gasp effort the 14-year-old Spaniard slotted himself into the middle of the front row between the 16-year-old Dutchman and the 14-year-old Japanese.
Touching the Cup
Bendsneyder has a 52 point advantage over Fabio Di Giannantonio in the points chase and after Saturday's race there will only be 50 left to score. So the 16-year-old Italian needs to cut that gap. It will not be easy as he qualified ninth and will come off the third row.
"I just didn't have the right feeling with the bike on the brakes," explained Di Giannantonio. "The back wheel is coming off the ground, the front is sliding. I am losing a lot of time going into the corners."
So such problems with the KTM RC 250 R for Bendsneyder who was wearing his usual broad smile. "The bike is feeling really great, we changed it a bit for qualifying and I was then really happy with it. The only problem I had was finding a good slipstream to get the pole, I was close but I needed it."
"On the last lap I found Marc (Garcia) and that made the difference, I got the tow down the straight then went past him and it was just full gas all the way to the end of the lap. A lot of fun and I'm looking forward to the race."
Second row for Garcia
At Silverstone, working with Bendsneyder had put both of them on the front row but this time Garcia was fourth fastest. "Sure I'm not happy about that, the front row would have been better," explained the 15-year-old Spaniard. "I was towards the front all the way then just lost out at the end. I feel good though, we got the bike working well and I think I can fight for the win."
Fellow countryman Fernández was thrilled with second. "Yes, fantastic, it was very difficult. I liked the circuit right from the start and my times were OK but we needed to change the bike a bit at the rear for Qualifying and at first I didn't have a good feeling in the final session. I just kept trying and eventually it came to me and I could make the time."
Sasaki headed practice with a couple of minutes to go and he was not too concerned to end up third. "No I'm happy, I really like the track, it is a bit different to the others, some tight corners and it is shorter so the lap times are all very close."
"At the beginning the bike was not so good but the engineers worked on it and now it is very good. I think that we can have a great race," concluded the Silverstone Race 2 winner.
This weekend's single Rookies Cup race can be seen live on www.redbull.tv and on TV stations around the world with Saturday's race starting at 16.30, the broadcast begins 10 minutes before race start.