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Smart-Weeden makes history
Smart-Weeden makes history

Finn Smart-Weeden made history by becoming the youngest winner of the Hel Performance with Motocourse British Junior Support Champion at Donington Park.

Not only is he the youngest champion at 16 years, five months and 16 days, he is also the first privateer winner with his family run team.

The championship came down to the wire, going into Saturday’s championship penultimate race Finn was joint leader with Scotland’s Lennon Docherty with 222 points each, 15 points ahead of Lewis Jones in third and 30 points ahead of Joe Ellis in fourth.

With elevated scoring for the final round with 35 points for a win and 30 points for second place, Finn needed to ride strategically during the weekend to secure the championship.

In Saturday’s race Lewis Smart won, Finn crossed the start-finish line in fourth, nearly 14 seconds ahead of Lennon in fifth, putting him only two points ahead of second in the championship fight and 10 points ahead of third.

With 35 points on offer for the win in the next race, Finn needed to beat Lennon and finish better than fourth if Lewis Jones won.

Finn fought a strategic last race, keeping it safe, coming past the chequered flag in second place ahead of both his rivals for the title and finally winning by 18 points ahead of the championship runner up, Lewis Jones who finished fourth and 32 points ahead of Lennon who crashed out in the penultimate lap while in fourth.

This weekend Finn who is from just outside Faversham will be competing in a wildcard Junior SuperStock round on a 600cc Yamaha R6 at the final BSB event, and his home round at Brands Hatch, as he considers what the next step will be for 2024.

Speaking about taking the title, a delighted Smart-Weeden said: “It’s an amazing feeling, I’ve worked so hard this year and had to also sit my GCSEs.

“This has been my dream for years and I’m elated. I’d like to thank my dad for building me the best bike and competing against the big teams, my mum for being the best pitboard operator, Andy and Heidi, my brother Tom, LS2 helmets who have been with me since I was about 7 years old, R&G Crash Protection, Knox Armour, Scott Leathers, Daniel Parker for keeping me sane. 1

“100% Suspension for making sure my bike set up worked for the track, conditions and my riding style, Dan Miller for the wicked bike design and Queen Elizabeth’s Grammar School for supporting me since year 7.

“There are loads more and they all helped me get here. Finally, I also want to say a massive well done to Lennon and Lewis who pushed me all the way, it was really the three of us all season so, to stand up there on the final podium with them, was a great feeling.”

photo credit: Championship trophy Impact Images  (BSB 2310 Donington Tim Keeton)

photo credit: Old hairpin, Donington GP circuit   Richard Horbury (BSB 2310 Donington Richard Horbury 02 cropped)

photo credit: championship podium JEC photography (BSB 2310 Donington JEC 01 cropped)

photo credit: post race celebrations JEC photography (BSB 23 10 Donington JEC 02)