James Toseland banished his 2008 British GP nightmare with a joint-career-best sixth at Donington Park on Sunday.
One year after falling at the very first turn of his home event, Toseland held fifth at both the beginning and end of a treacherous slick tyres/wet track race - only to lose out to reigning MotoGP world champion Valentino Rossi at the penultimate corner.
“I don't know where to start after a race like that,” said James. “It was so difficult for the entire race to gauge how much rain was falling and where it was falling and it took incredible concentration. I got my head down and was fifth on the first lap but just after halfway I was back in tenth because I was struggling for temperature in the left side of the tyre.
“I was wondering whether to pull in or not and change for the rain tyres at one point but I carried on and kept my lap times as consistent as I could because it was so easy to make a mistake. With some of the other guys stopping to switch bikes, I made up a few places and was fifth for the final few laps and thinking I was going to get my best ever MotoGP result.
“That would have been amazing to do in front of my home crowd, who were absolutely magnificent with their support today. But Valentino [fighting his way forward after crashing from the lead with ten laps to go] came through so strong on the last lap.
“He passed me at The Esses and I managed to dive back under him, but he was phenomenal on the brakes at the Melbourne Loop. I wasn't going to try and do anything that might take us both out.
"It's another sixth place and it definitely makes amends for the big disappointment of last year,” he declared “Congratulations to Colin [Edwards] because he rode a great race and deserved a podium.”
“James produced a tremendous performance,” stated Monster Yamaha tech 3 team manager Herve Poncharal. “He was under a lot of pressure in front of his crowd after the disappointment of last year but today we saw he can handle it in really difficult conditions. It would have been great for him to have held off Valentino for his best MotoGP result because he deserved it for the way he rode. But I have nothing but praise for Colin and James today."
Sunday's race was the last to be held at Donington Park before a switch to Silverstone.