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Rossi deal good for Toseland.

By Peter McLaren

James Toseland is looking forward to Valentino Rossi signing a new contract with Yamaha - since he believes it will help his own MotoGP prospects.

Rossi, a Yamaha rider since 2004, is expected to announce a new two-year deal by the start of the summer break on July 21st at the latest.

Toseland, already confirmed at Tech 3 Yamaha for 2009, not only welcomes the move - but has revealed that Rossi riding an M1 was a factor in his own choice of machinery for his debut grand prix season.

During an exclusive interview with Crash.net, Toseland was asked if Rossi staying was good or bad for him personally.

"It's definitely a good for thing for me for Valentino to stay here," replied the Englishman. "That was one reason why I made the decision to come to this manufacturer, because if Valentino Rossi - with all his experience and success - has a bad race nobody points the finger at him. They point to whatever bike he's on and that keeps the manufacturer on his toes to always improve."

With Rossi looking certain to stay alongside Jorge Lorenzo at the factory team, the only M1 seat still unoccupied for 2009 is alongside Toseland at Tech 3.

Colin Edwards presently has that place and, having taken a pole and podium already this season, Herve Poncharal is keen to keep the Texan - although budget seems to be a sticking point and Kawasaki has also shown an interest in Edwards.

Toseland hopes Edwards can stay and believes he has enjoyed clear benefits from having the #5 alongside him.

"Colin is very experienced with Yamaha, Michelin and with MotoGP," said James. "And I've know him for 10 years since Castrol Honda days, when I was in Supersport and he was in Superbike.

"We've got a really good relationship and all of his experience has come over to my side of the garage - with settings, with advice, with experience regarding which tyres to use.

"All that has really helped me, especially with the learning curve I've had at the beginning of this season."




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