Dessoy & Belford take victories in close BTC season opener at Silverstone
Harrison Dessoy (Microlise Cresswell Racing/Eastern Garage Racing) won the first R&G British Talent Cup race of the season after fighting at the front throughout, the number 55 at the head of the train when a Red Flag brought an early end to proceedings on Lap 15. Another who’d been in serious contention throughout, Amanuel Brinton (Kovara Projects/RS Racing), took second and was classified just a tenth back, with reigning Champion Johnny Garness (VisionTrack Racing Team) completing the podium after an impressive ride through the field from the back of the grid.
After an infringement at the end of qualifying, Garness had been demoted to the back and faced a mountain ahead as some seriously fast faces prepared to launch from the first two rows. When they did it was Sullivan Mounsey (Wilson Racing/Maddison Media) who took the holeshot, but it was immediately a big group fight for top honours at the front.
Mounsey was also a protagonist in the Red Flag incident through no fault of his own, with a crash for Rhys Stephenson (Kovara Projects/RS Racing) also collecting the number 4. Mounsey was unhurt in the incident, and Stephenson suffered a broken wrist so is now sidelined until healed after a tough start to the season for the number 23.
When that happened, it was Dessoy leading the way after an impressive opener for the number 55, and he takes another win and those first 25 points of the year. Brinton began his season as he means to go on with a podium first time out, with Garness’ ride for glory through the field rewarded with a third place.
Harley McCabe (McCabe Racing) was fourth, with Evan Belford (City Lifting/RS Racing) and Lucas Brown (Amphibian Scaffolding/SP125 Racing) next up. Ollie Walker (Wright Morgan/SP125 Racing) was ever so close to Brown when the flag went out, with Julian Correa (Microlise Cresswell Racing), impressive newcomer Ryan Frost (Talentum Motorsport by Azure Notions) and Charlie Huntingford (Opteven Mototechniks) completing the top ten.
Race 2 was a classic last lap showdown on Sunday, and veteran frontrunner Evan Belford came out on top as he just pipped Amanuel Brinton to the line. The 0.029s gap deciding victory wasn’t even the smallest on the podium either, with Johnny Garness taking third place and just 0.020s off Brinton as the three crossed the line almost in tandem.
This time Garness didn’t have to start from the back and the number 1 was immediately busy at the front, dueling Sullivan Mounsey for the holeshot. Once they were off, however, it was another classic group fight for glory too, with a ten-rider chain snaking its way around Silverstone.
Onto the final lap and it was Belford vs Brinton for victory, with the number 52 looking like he was starting to pull away down the back straight. But the 43 was a demon on the brakes into Brooklands and managed to swoop into the lead, with only two corners then left to go. Coming round the final apex though, it wasn’t quite enough and as Brinton kept a tighter line, Belford was able to sweep around the outside and steal the win by just hundredths. Brinton nevertheless proves the top scorer from Round 1 with another P2, and Garness takes another third as he begins his title defence.
Race 1 winner Harrison Dessoy was just off the podium in fourth, 0.194s off, and he beat Mounsey to the line by just 0.062s. Harley McCabe, Lucas Brown, Julian Correa and Ollie Walker complete what was ultimately a nine-rider fight for the win, with Ryan Frost having been given the black and orange flag for a mechanical problem and forced to drop out the battle. Clayton Edmunds (City Lifting/RS Racing) therefore completed the top ten, the number 64 at the head of the second group on Sunday.