North Kelsey sidecar aces land third straight British title

Todd Ellis and Charlie Richardson EMN-191024-105332002
Todd Ellis and Charlie Richardson EMN-191024-105332002

North Kelsey sidecar racer Todd Ellis and his passenger Charlie Richardson maintained their perfect record as they won their third consecutive British title.

Ellis and Richardson have only been completing in the series for three years and have sealed the championship each time, clinching their latest with a win and second place in the final round at Brands Hatch.

There was further positive news in the family, with Ellis’ step father Gary Bryan and his Leicester-based passenger Phil Hyde ending their season in fifth after another strong campaign in the class.

“It means so much to us to be champions this year and it’s three in a row so that’s amazing for us,” said Ellis.

“We will certainly be back next year to see if we can make it four in a row.

“We are aiming to do the world and British championship next year so the £10,000 that was awarded to us will certainly go a long way towards funding the challenge.”

After qualifying on pole position for the first of two races, Ellis and Richardson shot away to establish a comfortable lead and were never bothered again.

They went on to take a resounding victory ahead of rivals and team-mates Kershaw and Clark to go into the final race of the season with a 40-point lead.

With 50 points up for grabs for the winner, Ellis and Richardson just needed to follow their main rivals to be sure of the title.

Starting the final race from the fifth row of the grid, alongside their rivals, Ellis and Richardson got away well at the start, but Kershaw and Clark were even quicker and soon took the lead.

Ellis and Richardson settled into a safe second place and were happy enough to just follow their rivals home in the knowledge they would score sufficient points to secure the championship.

“We did the hard work by taking the win,” Ellis added. “We knew we just had to follow Kershaw and Clark to take the title.

“Once we got through the traffic I just let him go, watched my pit board and went from there.”

Meanwhile, a coming-together with another outfit ruined Bryan and Hyde’s qualifying and they were forced to start the first race from the eighth row, down in 15th.

But after a good start they made up places to 12th on the first lap.

On lap four they passed Peach and Edwards, and with another team retiring they were promoted up to 10th place.

Four laps later they passed Gray and Pitt, and when Stevens/Charlwood retired on the penultimate lap they moved up to eighth where they remained to the flag.

Starting the final race from the second row, Bryan/Hyde shot up into the lead, but that proved short-lived as they were overtaken by the faster title challengers and completed the race in ninth place.

Hyde said: “I’ve had a fantastic season with Bryan Racing - Gary has driven brilliantly all season.

“We can’t ask for more than top five in the Molson British Championship and top five at the (Isle of Man) TT.

“Thanks to all the sponsors and all the rest of the team for the time and effort they put it every weekend.

“And a massive well done to Todd and Charlie on taking the championship on a British-built Honda.”