BIG-NIGHT CALL FOR JOE

Wednesday September 23, 2020
LEICESTER youngster Joe Thompson has been handed a dream call-up to the senior British Final at Ipswich on Saturday.

The 16-year-old is the current leader of the British Youth Championship, and impressed once again last weekend by finishing fourth in the British Under-19 Final at Scunthorpe.

He and twin brother Dan were due to be reserves for the showpiece event at Foxhall – but following the withdrawal of Kyle Bickley, Joe now steps into the main field.

And the draw for the event throws up an incredible opening ride in Heat 3 when Thompson goes up against treble World Champion Jason Crump, who at the age of 45 is making a dramatic track return.

Thompson said: "I was really excited when I got the call, it's a great opportunity and there's no real pressure on me to go out and beat people.

"It will be good to go out there, have fun and see where I'm at compared to the more experienced riders – and it will certainly be an experience to line up against Jason in my first ride!

"I've ridden at Ipswich before, but I think it will be prepared very differently on Saturday. That was a British Youth round, and I'm sure for the British Final it will be a lot grippier.

"It's good that there are some other youngsters in the meeting too, so it's not a case of me being thrown in at the deep end on my own, and I definitely think there a few points to be collected.

"I don't really have any targets, it's just all experience really, and if I pick up a few points then it's a bonus."

Saturday's event was originally selected to be a government pilot event for Elite sport enabling 1,000 supporters to attend, only for those hopes to be dashed by the increased Covid-19 restrictions announced on Tuesday.

However, Watling JCB Lions fans can still follow Thompson's big night by purchasing the live-stream of the event, as well as the official meeting programme.

LIVE STREAM available here: www.sportcentral.tv (£12.95)
PROGRAMME available here: www.curtis-sport.com/online-store/2020-British-Final-p235363229 (£5)



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