The race day weather may have been overcast at Thruxton this weekend, but for Padgett's Junior team member Daniel Coutts it was the best day of the year as he lined up alongside team-mate and 2001 British Champion Leon Camier for his maiden front row start of the 2002 season.

Undaunted by being at the head of the field, the Horsham schoolboy delighted the team with a textbook start that saw him leading the pack on the first lap.

"I got a great start but unfortunately it wasn't quite enough to stop the others from slipstreaming me round the back of the circuit. As people started coming past I just had to wait for a gap so I could pull in and hold my position."

Although on this occasion unable to match the quality of his younger team mate's start, 16-year-old Camier used his experience to good effect and was one of the riders who benefited most from slipstreaming others around Thruxton's high speed curves.

The two Padgett's riders spent the rest of the race swapping places with Eugene Laverty, Russell Hodgson, John Pearson and Andy Walker as each rider desperately tried to establish an advantage over the others.

Whilst this group were busy fighting over sixth place, the leading trio of series leader Martin, Farbrother and Wilcox had managed to break away from the field. Farbrother finally taking the chequered flag less than one-quarter of a second ahead of Martin.

Camier stamped his authority on his pack by heading the group over the line with Coutts just three places behind in ninth, ahead of Pearson and Walker.

"We knew the smaller guys would have an advantage here," said Camier afterwards, "because on the fast parts of the circuit they can tuck right in to get the best top speed, and that's crucial on a 125."

Team manager Clive Padgett was clearly delighted with the efforts of his young charges: "Although this wasn't Daniel's best finishing position of the year, it was undoubtedly his best race and the way he's improving marks him out as a championship winner next year. Leon's size obviously puts him at a disadvantage on a 125, especially at fast circuits and in windy conditions like today, but he showed his class this weekend by being fastest in the wet practice and starting from third place on the grid."

National 125 GP - Results:

1. Farbrother
2. Martin
3. Wilcox
4. Elkin
5. Smart
6. Camier (Padgett's)
7. E. Laverty
8. Hodgson
9. Coutts (Padgett's)
10. Pearson

 

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