Motorbike Racing: Yate-based Hedger crowned Pirelli National Superstock 600 champion
YATE race ace Luke Hedger clinched his second consecutive British title at Brands Hatch on Sunday.
The 17-year-old won the Pirelli National Superstock 600 class of the British Superbikes Series by 16 points in his first season in the Championship after being crowned British Motostar champion last year.
Hedger said: “I’m absolutely over the moon with the Championship win.
“To move up to the Superstock 600 class this year from the Motostar class was a big jump and it took me a while to adjust to the new riding style to suit the 600.
“I couldn’t have done this without the help and support this year from Michael and Norma (De Bidaph, Gearlink Kawasaki team owners) and all the Gearlink Kawasaki team. They have been unbelievable and I couldn’t ask more from a team.
“All season I have just settled in more and more and the wins started to come. I started creeping up the Championship table and that’s when I started to think that it might just be possible if I could remain consistent to win the series.
“I’ve worked hard all year and really wanted to do well; to win the Championship is just brilliant. I’m so pleased for everyone involved.
“Thank you so much to everyone who has helped me this season, all my personal sponsors, my team, my girlfriend and especially my mum and dad.”
Hedger was fired up for the final round, knowing he would be crowned champion if he finished ahead of Jordan Simkin.
He qualified in first, while Simkin crashed out early on in the first session and only managed to qualify in 16 place.
With conditions for second qualifying very wet Simkin was unable to get anywhere near the times of the day before and started the race way down on the fifth row, which gave Hedger a very comfortable advantage as he was on the front row.
The talented teenager proved his worth as he made an amazing start off the line, going into the first corner in first place, but he rode an extremely mature race.
Avoiding any risks, he let other riders pass him and went over the line in eighth place.
With the weather conditions still very difficult Simkin couldn’t make any places up and finished down in 18th.
Hedger, who started racing at nine-years-old, also won the GP3 Cup in 2010 and the ACU Academy Cup last year.
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