2018 BRITISH INDIVIDUALS: Day one preview

This is the first time the North have staged the championships in its new format, where all the finals are held over the Bank Holiday weekend. The Blue Riband finals were last in the North in 2014, when staged at Bury’s Goshen Raceway. Brandon Whetton (Under 16), Charlie Jane Herbert (Women) and Andy Angell (Open) were the winners then.

We start with the under 8’s and 10’s championships, which will set the weekend rolling at Astley on Saturday morning.

Under 8s

The Norths main hopes will be with Aiden Green and Frank White (A and T), pictured here at the Ipswich round of the Little League GP series. Aiden and Frank were joint winners of the Northern region GP, and were third and fourth at the most recent National round at Coventry. Fellow A and T rider Oscar Belt was sixth in the region, but has yet to race Nationally. Bury have two finalists in Sam and Bobby Dunphy, they finished 11th and 16th at Coventry. Sheffield are also represented by two riders in Charlie Priest and Erin Balfour. Charlie finished third in the region GP, and was impressive in finishing seventh at Coventry (might have been fifth but for an unlucky fall on the last corner). Erin won her last race to finish 13th at Coventry. Seven of the top eight from the Coventry round will be racing this time, indicating a very competitive final. Winner at Coventry was Jack Tidball (Exeter), who won all four of his regional rounds to top the South and South Wales GP table. Also from the SSW region are Poole trio of Teddy Curtis, Talluah Curtis and Harvey Johnson-Fanner. Teddy was second to Jack in all four regional rounds. The South and South East region provide the other finalists. Oliver Edmunds and Charlie Spurgeon are from the successful Kesgrave Club. They finished second and third in the region GP, with Oliver second at the Coventry round. The SSE regional winner was William Blackmore (Norwich), he finished 8th at Coventry after falling on the last corner of the B final. Also from Norwich is Connor Jarrett, who placed 7th in the region GP. Final place is taken by Harry Ridley (Hellingley) who was 6th in the SSE region and 6th at Coventry.

Under 10 Girls

Astley duo of Harriet Belt and Sabrina Evans will carry the Norths hopes. They face strong opposition in Natalie Goulden (Poole) and Lily Parr (Kesgrave). They were the highest placed girl racers at Coventry, finishing in 8th and 9th respectively. Natalie was 2nd in the SSW region while Lily placed fifth in the SSE region. Completing the line up is Amberley Gant (Kesgrave), who given Kesgraves traditions will be tough to beat.

Under 10 Boys

The top four from the last little league grand prix at Coventry are all down to ride, which should provide some excellent racing. The four riders provided a thrilling race for the A final at Coventry. Winner that day was Ryker Jolly (Kesgrave), who was also the SSE regional champion. In fact all four regional champions are in the line up, Scott Rowles (Poole/SSW), Liam Wells (Leicester/Midlands) and Duncan Whalley (A and T/North). Duncan will be looking to see if he can put home track advantage to good use, and will be joined by Lewis Skitterall, Fraser Brundrett and Frank White (doubling up after the under 8’s) from Team Green. The Norths other representatives are Edward Balfour (Sheffield) and Tom Dunphy (Bury). Edward was second in the region, while Tom was 7th. Jack Tidball (Exeter) will double up from the under 8’s, which will be a big challenge for him. Corey Burt (Wednesfield) was second in the Midlands region and 4th at Coventry. Hethersett have one rider in Shaun Kell, he was fourth in the SSE region. The progressive Kesgrave Club have three more capable riders in Harvey Shumake, Luca Woodhouse and Oscar Hammond, who were second, third and 7th in the SSE region.

Under 12 Girls

Four riders will compete to be champion. Will Shannon Tucker (Exeter) emulate fellow Exeter rider Rosie Tidball, who was 2017 champion. Shannon was highest placed girl (6th) in the SSW regional Grand Prix, but hasn’t raced in the Nationals. Daisy Sherwood and Lexie Curtis (Poole) were placed 7th and 9th in the regionals with Daisy in a deserved 11th in the BYJL Nationals. Completing the line up is Josie Kell of Hethersett. So no representation from the North.

Under 12 Boys

This promises to be a top class competition. Not only are the four regional BYJL winners lined up (John White – North, Kyle Wells – Midlands, Noah Woodhouse – SSE and JJ Wildman – SSW), but also included are the regions second and thirds. John (A and T) will have home track advantage, and is joined by Team Green riders Charlie Burgess (regional 6th) and Tom Morrissey (regional runner up). The North provided the winner in 2017 (Harry Radford – Bury) and will have Sheffield’s Logan Perkins (who was third in the regional BYJL) carrying the hopes. The Kesgrave club have the most representatives, four in total. Noah Woodhouse is joined by Charlie Parr (2nd In region and 7th in national BYJL), Charlie Beeton (7th regional and 5th national) and Torsten Jolly (3rd regional and 9th national).
Poole have three riders Kenzie Bennett (3rd regional and 4th national), Oliver Saunders (2nd regional and 8th national) and Oliver Johnson (placed 20th in the national BYJL). McKenzie Laing (Exeter, who was 5th in the SSW region) joins Birmingham duo of Connor Steel (2nd regional and 13th national) and Charlie Buet-Gannon (3rd regional and 6th national) to complete the line up.
With the BYJL current top 10 all racing this could be the most open final of the weekend.

Under 14 Girls

Maddie Saunders (Poole) is back to defend the title she won in 2017. Her season is going from strength to strength. First in the SSW region and currently third in the BYJL Nationals, she also leads the Womens Supertrax league intermediate category. Main challenge will come from Astley home star Emily Burgess. Emily is also having a super season. The Welsh Open winner, is second in the BYJL, third in the senior women’s Supertrax league, gained her first junior England cap and was 7th in the European Championships. Rosie Tidball (Exeter) won the under 12 british title in 2017 and holds fourth place in the national BYJL. Megan Burt (Wednesfield) was fourth in the regional BYJL and is 9th in the national series. Rebekah Humphries (Birmingham) has experience in the Womens Supertrax league, currently fifth in the intermediate series. Miah Laing (Exeter) placed third in the competitive SSW region, and is 12th in the national series. The nine rider field is completed by Erin Corrigan (A and T), Charmaine Wells (from the top women’s club Leicester) and Phoebe Hammond (Kesgrave).

Under 14 Boys

The 2017 champion was Lewis Brinkoff, who is among the favourites for the under 16 title. Will this years winner go on to achieve what Lewis has.
Favourite will be Nathan Goulden (Poole), who is yet to loose a race in the BYJL in 2018 (either regional or national). He will have company from his Poole club in Josh Nottle (3rd regional and 5th national) and Kenzie Bennett (who doubles up from the under 12 final). John White (A and T) also doubles up from the under 12’s, and will enjoy his home track. The Norths other hopes lie with Harry Radford (Bury) and Kielan Burton (Sheffield). Harry won the British under 12 title in 2017 and currently lies third in the BYJL National series. Kielan won the North regional title and is second in the national series (having finished second to Nathan in every round) and is Sheffield’s top scorer in Northern League Two. Ellis Richmond (Wednesfield) won the Midlands region BYJL and is placed 4th in the national series. Jack Horton (Exeter) placed 4th in the SSW regional BYJL, but has not yet raced in a national event. Completing the nine rider line up is Jack Reynolds (Coventry), who was placed 5th in regional BYJL and is 6th in the national series.

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