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Last Updated: Friday, 22 June 2007, 09:56 GMT 10:56 UK
Pedrosa targets Donington victory
By Julian Shea

Live coverage on BBCi , BBC Two and Radio Five Live
Saturday (1345 BST) and Sunday (1215 BST)

Dani Pedrosa
Pedrosa was third in Barcelona but hopes to be on top of the podium

British-based Spaniard Dani Pedrosa is confident his first MotoGP victory of the season is imminent as he returns 'home' for the British Grand Prix.

The Repsol Honda rider earned one of his two wins in his debut season at Donington, but has had to settle for two seconds and two thirds this year.

"It's the first time I have had to develop a bike myself - that's harder than the debut," he told BBC Sport.

"But a win is coming soon. I'm pushing for it but we must find a bit extra."

The 21-year-old finished fifth in last season's MotoGP championship, earning the Rookie of the Year trophy for his consistent performances.

Donington is like my second home race and the crowd is unbelievable

Dani Pedrosa

But it was his collision with team-mate Nicky Hayden in the Portuguese Grand Prix, which nearly cost the American the world title, which provided the most memorable moment of his debut year.

This year, defending champion Hayden has had a disastrous time struggling to adapt to the new 800cc bikes, and it has been Pedrosa who has kept team morale up.

After seven races, including podium spots in the last two at Mugello and Barcelona, Pedrosa is third in the standings and has leaders Casey Stoner and Valentino Rossi in his sights.

The one blot on his copybook this season was crashing out in Turkey, the only time any of the top five riders in the championship has failed to score a point this season.

"For the moment I'm the only person who has a zero, from Turkey, so I'm a little bit off the points, but I will try to win as many races as possible and then we will see," he said.

Dani Pedrosa at Donington in 2006
Pedrosa aims to win at Donington for the second year running
"The class is so competitive, the smallest problem and you're almost out of a chance to win - even if you are Rossi.

"Casey is very fast but I can beat him. I did it in the past so why not now?

"Donington is like my second home race because I live close to there, and the crowd is unbelievable.

"I have happy memories of Donington - I hope the bike will work well like it did last year and I hope for nice weather."

The last race in Barcelona brought mixed fortunes for Pedrosa.

He broke away from the chasing pack but found himself unable to muscle in on the battle between leaders Stoner and Rossi.

606: DEBATE

"I was fighting to get off the group and was pushing the bike for the last 10 laps," he added.

"At that point the bike is more unstable. I was fighting to keep up so I had no chance to get in on the fight for the lead.

"I was disappointed with that, but I was also happy because it was the first time I finished close to the leaders - before I always lost three or six seconds in the last laps."



SEE ALSO
Briton Smith cool in GP spotlight
22 Jun 07 |  Motorbikes
Steve Parrish's MotoGP column
21 Jun 07 |  Motorbikes
Rea misses Donington MotoGP ride
18 Jun 07 |  Motorbikes
Stoner wins epic Catalunya battle
10 Jun 07 |  Motorbikes
Rossi claims sixth Italian GP win
03 Jun 07 |  Motorbikes
Vermeulen wins in rainy Le Mans
20 May 07 |  Motorbikes
Rossi on top after Hayden crashes
15 Oct 06 |  Motorbikes
Pedrosa triumphant at Donington
02 Jul 06 |  Motorbikes


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