Sunday October 11, 2020
LEICESTER’S Dan Thompson has been crowned British 500cc Youth Champion.

The final round of the 2020 series at Belle Vue on Saturday looked set to come down to a shootout between Dan and twin brother Joe, who led the standings by two points heading into the meeting.

Dan won his four qualifying races and his task in the Final became slightly easier as Joe suffered mechanical problems after winning his first ride.

Joe followed up with three third places, but dropping points to Harry McGurk and Elliot Kelly in Heat 7 proved costly as it meant he missed out on a place in the Final.

That meant Dan needed first or second place in that race to take the title, or third for a run-off with Joe – but in the event, he made a fast start from gate two and covered all angles to hold off McGurk and Jake Mulford.

Between them, the twins have won four of the five rounds this year, and Joe’s performances in the previous meetings were already strong enough for him to be second overall to complete a proud family one-two, with McGurk third.

Dan said: “It was a great night. There were a lot of good lads here tonight, it was more of a National League line-up than British Youth, and they were all fast.

“But I got the set-up dialled in for the Final and I’ve been working on my gating a lot. I knew it was going to be tough, but it ended up alright in the end!”

Meanwhile there was agony for Watling JCB Lions mascot Max James, who missed out on the 250cc title in a run-off with his rival Luke Harrison.

The two riders could not be separated at the end of the series after Harrison won the Final at Belle Vue ahead of James, and that meant it went down to a extra deciding race.

James led from the start but Harrison surged inside him on turns three and four to take the title – although both riders deserve massive credit for the standard of their racing during 2020.

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