(CNN) -- Championship leader Jorge Lorenzo grabbed pole position for Sunday's Malaysian MotoGP with a record-breaking lap in qualifying at the Sepang International Circuit on Saturday.
The Yamaha rider clocked a time of two minutes 00.334 seconds towards the end of the one-hour qualifying session, breaking the circuit record (two minutes 00.518 seconds) set by Italy's Valentino Rossi three seasons ago.
"I managed to set a new lap time in the last lap with new tyres. Pole position is a very good position but we need to set-up the bike [for Sunday]," the Spaniard said.
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His compatriot Dani Pedrosa will start Sunday's race from second with Italy's Andrea Dovizioso third.
Reigning champion Casey Stoner from Australia finished fourth with Britain's Cal Crutchlow one place further back. America's Ben Spies took sixth place on the grid.
Lorenzo is currently 28 points ahead of Honda's Pedrosa who has closed the gap on the championship leader in recent weeks, winning four of the last five races.
Casey Stoner, who returned to action last weekend after recovering from an ankle injury sustained at the Indianapolis MotoGP in August, is third in the overall standings 113 points behind Lorenzo.