Hayden claims provisional pole ahead of Rossi

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src=' ' class='caption'> Nicky Hayden of Repsol Honda claimed provisional pole for Sunday's British Grand Prix at Donington Park.

Updated: February 25, 2007 10:07 IST
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Donington Park:

Nicky Hayden of Repsol Honda claimed provisional pole for Sunday's British Grand Prix at Donington Park with a lap record during Friday's first qualifying session. World championship leader Valentino Rossi was second quickest on his Yamaha, with Ducati's Loris Capirossi third. The riders were greeted by bright blue skies and warm sunshine for the opening practice session for the British Grand Prix at Donington Park. Everyone at the track had feared the worst after the paddock was flooded by heavy rain on Thursday evening. But the storm cleared overnight and the track was in a perfect condition for an entertaining first session. Overall world championship leader Valentino Rossi of Italy set the quickest time of the first free practice session, ahead of Nicky Hayden. But the American had the better of the Italian in the following first qualifying session. Hayden claimed provisional pole position for Sunday's race with a fastest lap time of one minute 29.295 seconds - a lap record at the Leicestershire circuit. Rossi had to settle for second fastest on his Gauloises Fortuna Yamaha, just 0.289secs behind. Ducati Marlboro's Loris Capirossi was third. Max Biaggi is aiming to leapfrog Rossi in the overall standings this weekend, currently lying second in the overall rankings and just one point behind. But he could only manage seventh quickest aboard his Camel Honda. Telefonica Movistar Honda's Sete Gibernau, lying third in the championship standings, qualified fifth. While fourth fastest went to Carlos Checa of Spain on his Yamaha. In the 250cc category Alex de Angelis stole the show. The Aprilia Racing rider set a provisional pole time of 1min 33.336 secs while Toni Elias was second, 0.154secs slower, with Randy de Puniet third and world championship leader Daniel Pedrosa fourth. While in the 125cc category, Italy's Andrea Dovizioso set a fastest qualifying time of 1min 37.736secs on his Kopron Team Scot Honda. Pablo Nieto and Mika Kallio were second and third fastest respectively. The second qualifying session takes place on Saturday. (AP)

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