Alvaro Bautista and Yonny Hernandez went into the first qualifying sessions as the favourites to get promoted to the top twelve.
Before the mid-session tyre change, Loris Baz led Cal Crutchlow by a hundredth of a second and while everyone was looking for a tow with two minutes left, Bradley Smith quietly sliced a twentieth of a second off Baz's time but both Crutchlow and Alvaro Bautista both pushed him out of contention. As Aprilia were celebrating, Loris Baz ruined their jubilation by knocking Bautista to third.
Crutchlow and Baz joined the ten quickest men for the final qualifying session but their times were slower than the times the top ten posted to qualify for the second session.
Jorge Lorenzo bolted from the green flag, eager to get a fast lap on an empty track with a new hard front and a soft rear tyre and he instantly put a 1'39.405 benchmark lap in. Marc Marquez took a lap to beat it, setting the fastest lap of the weekend so far with a 1'39.064, a third of a second quicker than Lorenzo. Valentino Rossi held off Pedrosa with a handful of respectable third place laps but even after staying out a lap more than Lorenzo, he couldn't match his teammate's second place lap.
As Rossi returned, Lorenzo set back out to start his second run and on his first flying lap he scythed two tenths of a second from Marquez's quickest time, his 1'38.858 putting Lorenzo on top. Marquez hit back, on track for the top spot, but his last sector wasn't quick enough, but with the flag out, Valentino Rossi turned his last lap into a fast lap, from a personal best halfway round, Rossi increased the pace in the third sector and took his first Jerez pole position since 2005.
Valentino Rossi and Jorge Lorenzo made it two Yamahas at the front and Marc Marquez took third place on the Honda. The second row was Andrea Dovizioso's double-winged Ducati ahead of the Suzukis of Maverick Vinales and Aleix Espagaro. The top eight riders were all within a second of Rossi's pole time.