Horsman misses out on British Talent Cup title by 0.057 seconds

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There was an unbelievable climax to the British Talent Cup at Silverstone this weekend. There were only two of the Moto3 riders battling for the title but 22 wanted to win one or both of the final two races of the season. Londoner Horsman was 16 points adrift of Scott Ogden at the start of play but he led the championship overnight after a
fantastic win in race one. The points were tied but Horsman had more race wins than his rival.

In race two it went to the final corner of the eleventh lap of the 3.7-mile Silverstone circuit. Despite Horsman leading large parts of the race, Jack Nixon took the win and Ogden pipped Horsman by 0.073 seconds at the finish line as they ended the race second and third.

The Forest Hill rider had to settle for the runner up spot in what has been a fantastic season for the 18-year-old.

Race weekend at Silverstone
Horsman was under no illusion of the task ahead when he arrived for the final weekend. He had a significant points gap. His rival from Doncaster had finished every race and only failed tostand on the podium once in the ten previous outings. Horsman record was equally as impressive. The rider from Forest Hill had stood on the podium in all the races he had finished bar one and that was due to a mechanical problem. His only DNF was a result of another rider
taking him out.

Qualifying
After too very good free practice sessions Horsman lead the timesheet in FP2 and was looking towards a good qualifying session. However, the 30-minute session didn’t good to plan. A lot of riders had seen how fast Horsman was and were using him for a tow. He found riders going passed him and then slowing. He struggled throughout to find a clear lap and only managed the 8 th fastest time. His main rival Ogden had qualified in fourth.

Despite his qualifying position Horsman was confident for the first race. He knew he had the pace and was sure that if he made a good start then over the 11 laps of the 3.7-mile circuit he would be challenging at the front.

Race One
Horsman knew what he had to do. He had to win the 11 lap race and hope that a fair number of other riders finished ahead of Ogden to give him a chance of taking the title in race two. It started well for Horsman. Although Ogden gained a position in the first corner to move into third, Horsman was quickly into sixth place. A few corners later and he was up to fifth. He continued his progress overtaking Ogden and eventually crossing the line for the first time in an impressive third position.

Horsman and Brian Hart then started to break away from the rest of the field. Over the next few laps they managed to open a gap of between eight-tenths and one second over the chasing riders. Hart and Horsman traded the lead at the front of the race on several occasions.

With eight laps remaining Fenton Seabright and Rhys Irwin began to reel the front two in. The front group briefly became four. However, Scott Ogden had come through and was not far behind.

The following lap and the front group had become an eighteen-wheel train of nine bikes all looking to make it to the podium. Ogden had set the races fastest lap at the time, as he tried to ensure he was in the hunt for the race win.

On the penultimate lap we saw a familiar scene with Horsman and Ogden leading the field. However, the other seven riders were on their tails. After Horsman had led most of the race Ogden moved into the lead through Stowe Corner. Horsman kept calm and hit back when they came through Abbey to re-take the lead on the final lap.

As the riders went through Becketts for the last time, Fenton Seabright came through to second position and Ogden dropped to third. Horsman put the hammer down and as Nixon then came through into second the number 23 of Horsman had opened a gap of around half-a-second on those squabbling behind.

Ogden then dropped to fifth and then raised his hand as he appeared to have a problem with his bike.

Horsman held his nerve and went on to take the race victory by more than eight-tenths of a second over Jack Nixon with Fenton Seabright third. More importantly from Horsman’s point of view was that Ogden came across the line in seventh.
Horsman collected 25 precious points for the race victory. Ogden took nine. You could not have written a better script for the final race of the British Talent Cup. The two riders who have been at the front of this championship the whole season were tied on 201 points each with one race to go. Horsman now led the series on account of his five race wins to Ogden’s three.

Race Two
Whoever finished ahead of the other out of Ogden and Horsman would become British Talent Cup Champion 2019.

Horsman’s start to the second 11 lap race was a little more subdued as he remained in eighth place through the opening curves, whilst Ogden leapt from fourth to second. However, in the second half of the lap he came into his own as he moved through into fourth place with Ogden just behind him.

The positions changed with such regularity between the leading riders in the opening laps, it was difficult to keep pace. Fenton Seabright led for a while, so did Charlie Farrer. There were times when we saw four riders abreast as they headed towards Maggotts. Ogden and Horsman keen to keep out of trouble but also aware that they needed to beat each other.

Horsman was never shy to lead the race although he shared this duty with Seabright early on. At times it looked like Ogden might get bogged down in the pack but when he needed to he was able to move through the field to make sure he kept in touch.

Ogden set his fastest lap with two to go and we saw him hook onto the back wheel of the race leader Cameron Horsman. Ogden took the lead riding round the outside at Stowe Corner but Horsman struck back quickly to regain first position.

On the final lap there were four of them jostling for the lead as Horsman led down the Hangar Straight. All three riders slipstreamed Horsman leaving him fourth through Stowe Corner. Nixon and Ogden touched but both stayed upright. Horsman overtook Seabright to take third as they arrived at Vale. As the came onto the Wellington Straight for the final time Horsman was back in the lead, Ogden on his back wheel and then Nixon in third. Ogden slipstreamed
Horsman but Nixon slipstreamed both to take the race lead through Brooklands. Ogden had the inside line through Luffield. Horsman pulled out of the slipstream through the final corner of Woodcote but the run to the finish line was too short. The difference was just 0.073 seconds.

The title was gone.

Cameron Horsman finished on 217 points to Ogden’s 221. During the season Horsman won five races, more than any other rider in the championship, and had he not been taken out at Donington Park the season could have ended differently.

Horsman said, “Firstly, congratulations to Scott Ogden on taking the British Talent Cup title. He’s ridden well all season.

Coming into the weekend I didn’t really think I had much hope of clawing back 16 points but I never give up so was determined to give it a go. Having got so close I can’t deny I feel disappointed. The reality is I couldn’t have done anymore. I had two races in the whole season when I didn’t score points and neither of those where my fault.

Clearly everyone wants to win but I have to look back at my British Talent Cup season and think that although I was second I have achieved a lot and improved so much as a rider. Thank you to Dorna Sports and all the guys that help organise the series, I have had two wonderful years in this championship.”

After Cameron Horsman’s fantastic achievements in the British Talent Cup come to a close there is still the matter of the standard Moto3 championship, British Motostar, to conclude. That championship is a support class of the British Superbike series. Horsman is currently second in that, two points behind none other than Scott Ogden with eight races to go.

Words: Jeremy Ryan

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Photos: Bonnie Lane