Yorkshire's James Cowton will be presented with the 2014 Duke Road Race Rankings trophy at a prize-giving ceremony on Saturday, January 17, at the Holiday Inn, York.

Cowton becomes the 13th winner of the prestigious series since its inception in 2002 and the first English rider to collect the coveted accolade.

The 22-year-old is one of the sport's most promising young riders and enjoyed a stunning season in 2014, claiming six wins at Oliver's Mount, Billown and Dundrod, where he secured his maiden international race success at the Ulster Grand Prix in the Lightweight race.

Cowton also sealed nine runner-up finishes and 13 third place results from the 45 races he completed last year, setting seven fastest laps to top the Duke Rankings Series with 1858 points, edging out Ivan Lintin (1817) and Dean Harrison (1799).

Michael Dunlop, who won the title for the first time in 2013, was fourth overall on 1591 points but did not compete in a substantial number of points-scoring events included within the series.

Cowton will receive the prized Geoff Duke Trophy and replica from Geoff's son Peter Duke, Managing Director of Duke Marketing, at the Auto 66 Club's dinner and prize-giving night and becomes only the sixth recipient of the unique award in its 13-year history.

The inaugural winner in 2002 was Northern Ireland-based Welshman Ian Lougher, who went on to collect the award again in 2005 and 2006.
Manxman Conor Cummins took the honour in 2007 and last year's winner was Ballymoney's Michael Dunlop.

Fellow Ulsterman rider Ryan Farquhar first won the Duke Rankings in 2003 and retained the title in 2004 before notching five successive titles from 2009 to 2012 to lift the accolade a record seven times.

The 2014 Duke Road Race Rankings Series was held over 25 rounds, commencing at the Spring National Road Races at the North Yorkshire venue of Oliver's Mount in mid-April and concluding in November at the Macau Motorcycle Grand Prix.



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