Triumph ValMoto has announced that it will once again contest the British Supersport Championship with the stunning Daytona 600 in 2004.

The factory effort is aiming to build on the success of its first season of competition and become a genuine title contender and, to that end, teenage sensation Craig Jones has been confirmed as the team's sole rider. This year, the 18-year old impressed many with his skill and determination, before finally achieving Triumph's first-ever British Supersport podium finish in the season finale at Donington.

"I'm extremely happy to be continuing ValMoto's groundbreaking partnership with Triumph," said team manager Jack Valentine, "Working with a British manufacturer has been a lifetime ambition for me and last season was one of the most rewarding of my career. We had our highs and lows, but certainly succeeded in demonstrating the true potential of the Daytona 600. We've made further improvements in performance since the end of the season, and I'm feeling exceptionally positive about the year ahead.

"The single-rider structure has proven to be a success in Supersport. In 2003, the championship was dominated by teams that fielded only one rider. Craig learned a great deal during that time, thanks to a close working relationship with Jim Moodie, and I now feel that he is ready to shoulder the responsibility himself. He is an exceptional talent and one which Triumph and ValMoto are keen to nurture."

Jones' never-say-die attitude helped develop Triumph's 600cc challenger from an impressive road bike to a remarkable racing machine. By signing for a second year, he has also shown that he has the maturity and commitment to see a project through to completion.

"I'm really looking forward to my second season with Triumph ValMoto," Jones admitted, "There's a lot being said at the moment about the lack of opportunities for young riders, so it's great that a major manufacturer has put its faith in me.

"The learning curve was steep last season, but I had a fantastic team-mate and things came together toward the end. I got a real sense of satisfaction from playing my part in our success and next year we should be competing on a more level playing field."

A further announcement regarding Triumph ValMoto and its commercial partners will be made in due course.

Veteran Jim Moodie partnered Jones for the 2003 season.

 

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