James Toseland frustrated
The Tech 3 Yamaha team had another day of contrasting fortunes at a blustery Donington Park today, with Colin Edwards claiming a hard fought fourth place in the British GP.
But there was bitter disappointment for James Toseland and a record
British GP crowd of nearly 90,000 fans as the 27-year-old finished 17th following a crash at the first corner.
Seventh at the end of the first lap, Edwards started to make his charge through the field on lap 14 when he passed Chris Vermeulen at Coppice. Just three laps later he claimed fifth with an overtake on compatriot Nicky Hayden before he took fourth place from Andrea Dovizioso on lap 18. For most of the second half of the race, Edwards was able to run the pace of podium finishers Valentino Rossi and Dani Pedrosa, but despite some aggressive riding he was unable to fight his way back into contention for a second successive podium.
It was a day of frustration for Toseland, who determined to make a strong start from 16th on the grid, crashed at the first turn having gained several places. Despite a nasty bang to his right hand and the loss of his right footpeg, Toseland rallied himself to complete 30 tough laps at a fast pace. Despite his disappointing result, Toseland still got a rousing reception from British fans appreciative of his efforts.
Colin Edwards : "I'm a bit cross even though fourth is still a good result. In the dry on Friday it was so good and I was really happy with everything. But with the rain yesterday I got thrown a bit. The geometry of the bike is quite a bit different and the weight bias quite a bit different compared to last year. So riding in the rain threw me a bit today when it was dry.
Even this morning I went out and I came in and I started complaining about all these problems with the front end, yet it was exactly the same bike that I had on Friday. I got out in the race and in the first few laps I was struggling. I was riding hard but I couldn't get into the low 29s like I was doing on a tyre that had done 24 laps on Friday. And then it kind of clicked what I needed to do but it took too long to adjust. I kept letting the front pop up and kept running wide and running wide and then I figured it out.
Now you have to brake a lot deeper, harder and longer on this year's bike with the geometry and I just got my head around it too late. Once I did that I got into the low 29s and started moving through the field. As far as lap times there was not much between me, Valentino, Dani and Casey. I kept seeing them at the same spot on the track and they weren't pulling away. If anything I was gaining a little bit on them. I might have fought with them had I come through a bit quicker but we still did a fantastic job this weekend. The team and Michelin did a great job and I just wish I could run the race again."
James Toseland "It is hard to explain just how disappointed how I am. I really wanted to get a good result for my home crowd but it was always going to be difficult after the problems of yesterday. Starting from 16th was always going to be tough but I decided to attack from the start. I made a good start and passed a few people and didn't think I was too fast into the first corner but the rear end came round and I was down. I could have just cruised back to the pits but a lot of people had come to see me ride. I was hurting because I hit my head pretty hard and I smacked my right hand down on the tarmac.
And the right footpeg had snapped off, but I soldiered on because I wanted to get to that chequered flag more than anything. I was going to finish for all those fans, who have been unbelievable supporting me since I arrived here. I will bounce back from this but it has got to be one of the biggest disappointments of my career. It is not in my nature to give up and I didn't today, and I know my turn will come. I am obviously disappointed, but I have to congratulate Scott Redding. He did an amazing job and it was great for the British fans to see him do that.”
Herve Poncharal - Team Manager "Firstly I really want to thank Colin because again he did another great race. He qualified on the second row in the rain and although he lose some time in the early part of the race he was running the same times as Valentino and Dani and he was catching them later on. Seeing Colin do that today proves what a competitive package we have got. Of course I am very sorry and disappointed for James. I think he really wanted to do well but the rain on Saturday meant he was always racing against the clock to improve.
From then he was always trying to recover. He made a mistake but I have nothing but huge admiration for what he did afterwards. It took a lot of courage for him to carry in the circumstances and it showed that he really wanted to repay the British fans for their support. He wanted to do well for them and I don't think they can be disappointed with his effort. The good news is we have a race next week and he can show what a strong character he is by bouncing back."