Pol Espargaro enjoyed his best-career premier-class qualifying performance on Saturday at Le Mans. (Photo: Getty Images)

enjoyed his best-career premier-class qualifying performance on Saturday at . (Photo: Getty Images)

A selection of key statistics relating to the grid at the Monster Energy Grand Prix de France.

- is the first rider to start from pole at six or more successive MotoGP races since Casey Stoner in 2008 riding a Ducati. If Marquez wins the race it will be the first time that a rider has won five or more successive premier-class races from pole since Mick Doohan in 1997, on a Honda.

- Pol Espargaro starts from second place on the grid in just his fifth race in the MotoGP class, the best qualifying result by a satellite Yamaha rider since Cal Crutchlow was on pole at Brno last year.

- is in third place on the grid, which is the first front row start for Ducati since Nicky Hayden was third fastest qualifier at Motegi last year, which was also the last time that three different manufacturers were represented on the front row.

- Heading the second row of the grid is , who will be aiming to get on the podium for the first time since he was second at Laguna Seca last year.

- In fifth place on the grid is , who has had nine podium finishes in the premier-class at Le Mans, including three victories.

- Taking the final place on the second row is , his worst qualifying result since he was sixth on the grid at Laguna Seca last year.

- Heading the third row of the grid is Alvaro Bautista – his best qualifying result since he was in second place on the grid at the opening race of the year in Qatar.

- Aleix Espargaro is in eighth place on the grid, which is his worst qualifying result since he was ninth on the grid in Qatar.

- Ninth fastest qualifier is last year’s winner at Le Mans, Dani Pedrosa – his worst starting position since he was 12th on the grid at the Portuguese Grand Prix in 2010. If Pedrosa finishes in the top three in the race, he will have started the season with podium finishes at the first five races of the year for the first time since moving up to the MotoGP class in 2006.

- Bradley Smith heads the fourth row of the grid, which is his worst qualifying result so far in 2014.

Tags: , , , , , , ,