A first for de la Cour in last race of the season

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Competing at the Northamptonshire circuit of Rockingham with fellow Islander Chris Hamelin earlier this month, de la Cour secured third place in the first round of qualifying on his Yamaha R1.

Hamelin, riding his Honda CBR1000 for only the second time – having previously raced in the 600 cc championship – was making good progress before the rear of his bike stepped out, leaving him unceremoniously in the gravel.

In the 18-lap Superpole race de la Cour made a good start to go second into the first corner and was jostling for position with Championship leader Peter Baker before managing a comfortable third place, 16 seconds ahead of fourth, for his first podium of the year.

Hamelin, starting from the rear of the grid, made his way up to 15th out of the 30 GP1 and Supertwin riders that started the race.

In the first of two ten-lap races, which were being filmed for Sky TV on Sunday, de la Cour started well and maintained his position to take his second third place of the weekend while Hamelin finished 13th in the GP1 class, improving on his previous time by almost 1.5 seconds a lap.

But it was the final race of the weekend, and in fact the year, that de la Cour excelled, making an impressive start and leading into the first corner, again fighting off Baker at the front.

With Baker’s bike being of British Superbike specifications and de la Cour’s being just a stock bike, it wasn’t long until Baker took the lead and started pulling away.

But de la Cour didn’t give up and was soon back fighting for the top spot, making some overtaking moves although Baker came out on top on each occasion.

However, halfway through the final lap as de la Cour went to overtake the leader, Baker’s bike suffered an electrical problem, which handed the Jerseyman the win after what looked his best and hardest fought race of the season.


De la Cour finished the season eighth overall and Hamelin 34th.

Meanwhile, Hamelin was having his own fight further back in the pack before bringing his battle-scarred Honda home in 12th position, again improving his previous best lap time by half a second.

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