Casey Stoner heads to the seventh round of the 2011 MotoGP World Championship at Assen on a high as he looks to extend his newly acquired series lead.

Three consecutive race wins in France, Spain and the United Kingdom have seen Stoner overtake Jorge Lorenzo at the top of the overall standings, the Australian establishing a fairly comfortable 18 point advantage over the reigning champion.

His first visit to Assen on the Repsol Honda, Stoner heads to the Dutch circuit having never finished lower than fourth in the premier class, though he has only ever won once there in his career.

"It was a tough race in Silverstone and to come away with three wins in a row and also the Championship lead is awesome, so it's been nice to have a break after such a good time! I'm really looking forward to going to Assen, it's a nice track, the first section is a little slow and doesn't do too much for me, but the last part is a lot of fun. I believe the RC212V will work well for us there as it has done at all circuits so far this season.

"We will work hard to get the set up right on the bike and hope to challenge for another win, but right now we need to go ahead doing our best each race.

Touching on the continued woes facing erstwhile title challenger and Repsol Honda team-mate Dani Pedrosa, Stoner says it is unfortunate that he has been forced into a prolonged absence.

"I'm really sorry to hear Dani had to undergo another operation, he really doesn't deserve all this bad luck and I hope he'll be ok soon"