Motorcycling: Toseland zooms to front-row slot

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James Toseland made a blazing start to his attack on the World Superbike Championship yesterday when he qualified on the front row of the grid for today's two races in the opening round in Qatar.

The Yorkshireman was fourth fastest in the Superpole session on the 3.34-mile Losail circuit on his new bike, the 1,000cc Honda Fireblade entered by the Netherlands' Winston Ten Kate team. He had the satisfaction of relegating the reigning world champion, the Australian Troy Corser on his Alstare Corona Suzuki, to the second row.

"I don't fully understand the bike yet," said Toseland, who recorded the top speed on the circuit. "But if you have the speed that's half the battle."

Troy Bayliss continued the dominant form that he has shown in pre-season testing, and broke the track record on the way to pole position on his Xerox Ducati.