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Page last updated at 17:16 GMT, Friday, 20 June 2008 18:16 UK

Practice pace encourages Toseland

British MotoGP, Donington
Date: Sunday, 22 June
Qualifying live (Saturday): BBCi (Freeview channel 302) and BBC Sport website, 1350-1505, 125 and 250cc Sunday, BBCi (Freeview channel 301) and BBC Sport website, 1145-1415
Race live (Sunday): BBC Two, Five Live and BBC Sport website, 1415-1600 MotoGP Extra: Sunday, BBCi and BBC Sport website, 1600-1630

Britain's James Toseland
Toseland is looking forward to racing at a familiar circuit

James Toseland warmed up for Sunday's British MotoGP with an encouraging, if unexplosive, Friday practice.

The 27-year-old Briton posted the eighth fastest time of the day round the 2.5m Donington Park, but was less than a second off leader Casey Stoner.

Australian Stoner produced a superb best lap of one minute 28.253 seconds.

The Yorkshireman's familiarity with the circuit, where 120,000 spectators are expected, makes it his best chance of a podium finish in his debut campaign.

The two-time World Superbike champion has posted four sixth-place finishes so far this season and impressed many with his pace in his rookie MotoGP Season.

And he is confident he can challenge for honours on Sunday, saying: "We have been chasing a good setting all day and we found it in the last 10 minutes of the second session.

"I'm pretty pleased and I think I can find the pace of the leaders on Sunday and be right up there with them."

Last year's winner Stoner led former world champion Nicky Hayden by just over half a second, with championship leader and seven-time Donington winner Valentino Rossi third fastest.

Rossi criticised the lack of grip available at the circuit and said he hoped the weather would improve.

"The main problem here is the asphalt because it doesn't have any grip any more and riding on it is very difficult.

"Of course the temperature was quite low, which didn't help, but in some parts of the track the asphalt is finished. It's a pity because this track is great, one of my favourites."

Spaniard Dani Pedrosa, who won the last Grand Prix in Barcelona and trails Rossi by just seven points in the championship, crashed at Redgate corner and was sixth fastest behind Colin Edwards, Toseland's Tech 3 Yamaha team-mate, and Alex De Angelis.

Timings from Friday practice:

1. Casey Stoner (Aus) Ducati 1min 28:253sec
2. Nicky Hayden (US) Honda at 0.576sec
3. Valentino Rossi (Ita) Yamaha 0.656
4. Colin Edwards (US) Yamaha 0.716
5. Alex De Angelis (Smr) Honda 0.739
6. Dani Pedrosa (Spa) Honda 0.954
7. Shinya Nakano (Jpn) Honda 0.954
8. James Toseland (GB) Yamaha 1.088
9. Chris Vermeulen (US) Suzuki 1.157
10. Randy De Puniet (Fra) Honda 1.180

see also
All geared up for Donington
20 Jun 08 |  Motorbikes
James Toseland Q&A
20 Jun 08 |  Motorbikes
Steve Parrish's MotoGP column
18 Jun 08 |  Motorbikes
Can Toseland fly the flag?
09 Jun 08 |  Motorbikes
Toseland frustrated by conditions
04 May 08 |  Motorbikes
The team behind James Toseland
27 Apr 08 |  Motorsport

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