MLav VisionTrack Academy’s Johnny Garness won race one at Thruxton to give the number 57 his first shot at the British Talent Cup crown on Sunday.
Now 89 points clear of teammate Carter Brown, Garness needs to make that 100 or more by the end of race two to become the 2022 Honda British Talent Cup Champion with Brown now his only rival.
The 14-year-old’s Saturday performance says it can't be counted out either as he escaped after an early duel against Silverstone sparring partner Rhys Stephenson (Rocket Racing), with Brown then moving through to third and able to catch and pass the number 23 for second. Can Garness' sole rival for the Cup repeat that on Sunday?
Off the line in Hampshire though, Garness converted pole by well over a second into the holeshot and started to get the hammer down, with Stephenson once again the only rider with any real challenge early on. And the number 23 did manage to hit the front after only a handful of laps, but it was short-lived as Garness hit back and then didn't look back, escaping into the lead.
The focus then shifted to Brown as the number 74 was reeling Stephenson in, and once past he also started to take chunks out of Garness' lead. But heading wide and then running out of laps saw him forced to take second by just over two seconds, with Stephenson completing the podium.
Behind the podium fight there was a huge battle for fourth between Matthew Ruisbroek (Microlise Cresswell Racing), Harrison Crosby (Banks Racing), Evan Belford (City Lifting by RS Racing) and Amanuel Brinton (Mortimer Racing /Victoria House Racing Academy), with positions chopping and changing throughout. It went down to the final chicane and then the drag to the line, with just 0.166 splitting the four over the line. In the end, Ruisbroek took it ahead of Crosby and Brinton, with Belford forced to settle for seventh.
The fight for eighth was also close, with Lucas Brown (SP125/Amphibian Scaffolding) pipping Sullivan Mounsey (Wilson Racing/J&S Racing), Harrison Mackay (Wilson Racing/Super Soco) and Clayton Edmunds (MJL Racing).
It's been a tougher round so far for Microlise Cresswell Racing as Kiyano Veijer broke his foot in practice and is sidelined, and there was contact early on between Harrison Dessoy and Julian Correa as the race began, putting a dent in their day.