Toni Elias was overjoyed to qualify fourth for the San Marino Grand Prix, having languished in the midfield in practice.
The Gresini Honda rider improved by over 2s on his practice times today, and briefly held provisional pole in the closing moments of qualifying before the Yamahas and Dani Pedrosa pushed him back to row two.
"I'm really pleased because nobody ever expects to improve by two seconds in one day," said Elias. "One second is quite easy, but two? It's amazing really but it shows what a great job the team have done.
"I wasn't happy yesterday but I knew exactly where the problems were and I was able to get the message across to the team, who responded perfectly once again."
He is determined to keep moving forward in tomorrow's race.
We still have a couple of things to work on and I'd like to take another step forward before the race to close the gap further on the three guys ahead of us, but for the moment I'm contented and excited about our chances tomorrow," Elias said.
His team-mate Alex de Angelis will start seventh, but had hoped to be faster having been in the top five yesterday.
"I started out the session well and we put a really good rhythm together on race tyres but for some reason we couldn't make an improvement on the softer tyre and that's a shame because even if we'd just found an extra tenth I'd have been on the second row," he said.
"Anyway, the important thing is the race set-up and we're in good shape, so if I can get a good start tomorrow then we can look forward to another good race."