Danny Kent has become the UK's first motorcycle grand prix champion since Barry Sheene in 1977.

The Englishman wrapped up the Moto3 crown with a ninth finish in Sunday's Valencia season finale, a race won by title rival Miguel Oliveira.

"It's a massive relief," grinned Kent, who won the title by six points. "We went into the last 4 races thinking we could have been champions but finally we were able to do it. Thanks to my team, my sponsors, my fans and everyone out there!"

Kent went two years without a victory prior to joining the Leopard Racing (Honda) team, where he romped to five wins in the opening half of the season.

But the second half of the season saw a sudden downturn. Kent managed just one podium, a home win at Silverstone, prior to Valencia while big accidents at Aragon and Phillip Island eroded his commanding title lead.

Kent saw three chances to wrap-up the title before the final round slip away, with Oliveira moving ahead of Enea Bastianini to become Kent's last remaining rival from Phillip Island.

The 21-year-old will remain with the Leopard team for a return to Moto2 next season, riding alongside Oliveira.


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Oliveira really impressed me... won the race in difficult circumstances then immediately congratulated Danny.

Kent should have won this championship long ago... he choked about as much as a rider could, but just about stumbled over the line!

Hope they both go well in Moto2.

Well done Danny