Troy Bayliss admits he is wary of the 'Donington specialists' this weekend as he claimed provisional pole position for the 11th round of the World Superbike Championship at Donington Park.

Although the championship leader spent little time at the top of the timesheets today, strong laps late in both free practice and provisional qualifying still helped him to a clean sweep around a wet and rainy Donington.

He had to work hard for it though as he edged out one of the weekend's expected frontrunners Ryuichi Kiyonari, but also wild-card riders Cal Crutchlow, Leon Haslam and Tom Sykes.

Indeed, Bayliss claims he is paying close attention to these riders, particularly if the weather stays unpredictable. Nonetheless, his experience of racing in the UK puts him in good stead for the weekend regardless, he adds.

"Well I'm pretty happy as we've had two wet sessions today and I was fastest in both. We've made some good improvements throughout the day and so are quite satisfied, as it's not really possible to go any quicker than I did in these conditions.

"It's been very wet and windy too, so I'm hoping it may improve tomorrow but having said that and knowing the UK, I wouldn't be surprised if it stays wet for all the practice sessions before clearing up just before the races!

"As the results show, there are several Donington specialists here, with the British wild-cards all up there near the top, but I guess you could say that I did my "apprenticeship" here too so I'm hoping for a good weekend."


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