Author: Barry Nutley

Laidlow brothers head across to Snetterton as top of the class.

We are now at the halfway stage of this sidecar season as the series arrives at Snetterton over the weekend of 5-7 July. The first three rounds have been nothing short of sensational for Sam and Jack Laidlow from Dufton in Cumbria. From being virtual newcomers a couple of years ago, they lead the outright championship having taken three race victories.

Double victory last time out at Knockhill in atrocious conditions means they lead Lewis Blackstock and Paddy Rosney by a slender twelve and a half points, whilst are unbeaten in the Cup class, enjoying a fifty-plus point lead.

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Laidlow brothers shine at wet Express Tyre Services Knockhill round.

Credit – Jed Pilmoor Brady for the information in here, words by Barry Nutley

The teams would have something of a challenge to match the stunning action from the previous round at Donington, but if any track lends itself to close racing, it is the Knockhill circuit.

A relatively small turnout saw just thirteen outfits on track for free practice, with qualifying later Friday afternoon. Various domestic issues plus injuries kept several teams away and the session started in wet weather, although things improved deeper into it. Rob Biggs and Ferry Segers showed a clean pair of heels to the pack in the free session, repeating the speed we saw from Biggs on earlier appearances at Knockhill.

They were just ahead of John Holden using Clement Conil as stand-in passenger, and Lewis Blackstock/Paddy Rosney fresh from two good rides at the TT. Local talent Steve Kershaw was enjoying the services of Justin Sharp in the absence of Ryan Charlwood who was working in France this weekend.

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2024 British Sidecar Championship News

Rowe Motor Oil

The 2024 season is now here and will once again see the bulk of this thrilling series on the BSB stage. It kicks off at however, at Pembrey in South Wales with six rounds currently scheduled before the traditional closer at Brands Hatch.

Expect to see the usual eclectic mix of long and short outfits, with the GP premier class attracting world-class names once again.

The Cup class was fiercely contested last season, so there will be no shortage of battles for honours all the way down the field.

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British Sidecar Championship

Todd Ellis/Emmanuelle Clement clinch championship at Brands Finale

This final round had two unique features which could easily turn the year on its head. Both races would carry the traditional double points allocation, and in a final twist, all competitors were obliged to drop the two least productive races. Where races were missed through non-attendance, then those missed races could be included in the calculation. Todd Ellis and Emmanuelle Clement therefore, would keep all points earned thus far, as they missed three Cadwell Revival races due to world championship duties.

Lewis Blackstock and Paddy Rosney have scored every round, so they would need to shed points, provided they scored again in one or both races at Brands. It is often the case the end of season Brands Hatch closer attracts a variety of weather conditions, and that was the case for the free practice. It would have been so easy to throw it away and ruin the weekend, but Todd and Emmanuelle (LCR Brookland Yamaha) were taking no such chances. Instead, they left it to the young guns to set the standard, with Luke Williams/Jason Pitt (WSRT Yamaha) heading home Lee Crawford/Scott Hardie (ARC/Marin Motorsport Kawasaki). Joint leaders Lewis Blackstock/Paddy Rosney sat a reliable fourth fastest on the DHR/Express Tyre Services Yamaha

Qualifying – Blackstock/Rosney came out swinging with an early fast lap, with Williams/Pitt close behind. The track was dry, so times were good, whilst well shy of lap-record pace. After four laps, George Holden/Oscar Lawrence went fourth fastest, just as Ellis/Clement stormed ahead with a 1.33.684, only to eclipse that on lap nine with a 1.32.252.

Crawford/Hardie completed just two laps, obviously hitting problems, ending bottom of the pile with no more circuits completed.
Fastest Cup team were Paul and Tom Kirby, ending a very creditable fifth on their Adolf RS Yamaha ahead of fellow Cup runners Simon Robinson/Phil Hyde. Ellis/Clement and Williams/Pitt will line up on the front row for the two races, with Blackstock/Rosney and Holden/Lawrence sharing row two.

Race One – In contrast to yesterday morning, the morning was cold, crisp and clear. With the sidecar race late in the day, it would be hoped these conditions would hold. Mid-morning a heavy shower made things tricky for earlier sessions, so it was a case of crossed fingers and hope.

From the lights, the sprint to Paddock Hill Bend was won by Blackstock and Rosney, making their trademark start from row two, going straight through the middle. Luke Williams and Jason Pitt in plain black bodywork were immediately on their case and joined in the battle at the front. They matched the race leaders wheel for wheel, setting the fastest lap in the process.

Ellis claimed the lead on lap three, but Williams/Pitt went with them as they diced with Blackstock/Rosney. Up to fourth were George Holden and Oscar Lawrence on the Barnes Racing Kawasaki, who unbeknown to them were about to benefit, when at two thirds race distance, Blackstock had an electrical problem, dropping them back. He later recovered to stay in touch, but Williams wanted this one and almost passed Ellis for the lead with three laps remaining.

Cup leaders Phil Bell looked also to have a problem, as did Brian Gray and Clement Conil, spinning and jettisoning the passenger up the track.
Paul and Tom Kirby were then in the Cup hunt, but leaders of that class were Simon Robinson/Phil Hyde.
Final lap and Williams/Pitt were pushing hard, just as Ellis claimed the fastest lap of the race. Then disaster struck for Williams, and they pulled off with a blown engine. This elevated Holden/Lawrence to third behind Blackstock and Rosney, with Robinson/Hyde a fine fourth and Cup race winners, ahead of Kirk/Masters and the Kirbys. Incredibly, Williams/Pitt had just bettered Ellis with another fastest lap of 1.33.077 just before they broke down. This would earn them pole position for race two.

Result – 1/ Todd Ellis/Emmanuelle Clement (Brookland Yamaha), 2/Lewis Blackstock/Paddy Rosney (DHR/Express Tyre Services Yamaha), 3/George Holden/Oscar Lawrence (Holden Racing Kawasaki), 4/Simon Robinson/Phil Hyde (Alan Blaylock Haulage Yamaha), 5/Martin Kirk/Kyle Masters (MK Racing/5ive 8ight Designs Yamaha), 6/Paul Kirby/Tom Kirby (KRT Racing Adolf RS Yamaha), 7/Kevin Cable/Chaz Richardson (L&W Yamaha), 8/Craig Clarke/Pete Ensor (Centurion Packaging/Fine Line Sealants Honda, 9/Sam Laidlow/Jack Laidlow (Laidlow/Marin Yamaha, 10/Phil Bell/Carl Bell (Marin Motorsport Yamaha).

Race Two – Blackstock and Rosney came to the line knowing that to take the title, they would need a top three place even if Ellis/Clement were not to finish.

This was a tall order, and with a 100% record, the reigning champions were sitting pretty. Nonetheless, Blackstock gave it his best shot, once again grabbing the hole shot from the second row and leading the charge round Paddock Hill Bend from Williams/Pitt and Ellis/Clement.
The chasing pack streamed round behind, as Paul Kirby and Martin Kirk came together and got it sideways. They both went hurtling into the gravel, one of them upside down. Thankfully, both drivers and passengers escaped serious injury but were out of the race.

Attrition was high, with five outfits out of the action on the first two laps, with three others to follow as the race infolded. Nonetheless, there were sixteen finishers including a brave fight by Nicholls/Janssens to take the final place.

Meanwhile, at the front, Ellis took just two laps to muscle ahead, and once there, did not put a foot wrong. He was chased all the way by Williams/Pitt who this weekend showed what they can really do. Their future in this sport is bright, and we all hope to see a full season from them in 2024.

Blackstock/Rosney, safe in third, were on their way to runner-up spot in the series, one place better than last season. Can they go one better in 2024? only time will tell. Further back, a terrific charge by the Laidlow brothers Sam and Jack saw them get the better of first Kevin Cable/Chaz Richardson and then Simon Robinson/Phil Hyde.
The latter two outfits collided at Surtees as Robinson turned in, unaware Cable was making a play up the inside. They somersaulted and skidded off the track with Simon pinned beneath the bike. “Super-sub passenger” Phil Hyde took flight and landed feet-first before tumbling off the track. Again, no serious injury resulted, so this was good news.

Sadly, the Laidlow brothers’ efforts came to nothing as they retired from fifth place in the closing stages. They had made their mark and will be a welcome addition to the series going forward.

Meanwhile, Todd and Emmanuelle finished the job at the front, winning by eight seconds, taking the championship with an unbeaten win record.
Phil and Carl Bell had a strong sixth and were class winners, sealing their Cup class championship ahead of the unfortunate Kirby pairing, with Brian Gray/Clement Conil third, just four points adrift of Kirby.

A maximum for Rob Atkinson/Josh Smith saw the RAF F2 team take the title in that class from Greg Lambert/Andy Haynes.

Result – 1/Ellis/Clement, 2/Williams/Pitt, 3/Blackstock/Rosney, 4/Holden/Lawrence, 5/Cable/Richardson, 6/Bell/Bell, 7/Gray/Conil, 8/MacLaurin/Hope, 9/Currie/Sharp, 10/Peach/Edwards.

Final standings
GP Class – 1/ Ellis/Clement (Champions), 2/Blackstock/Rosney, 3/Holden/Lawrence, 4/Kirk/Masters. 5/Biggs/Segers, 6/Currie/Sharp, 7/Christie/Christie, 8/Kershaw/Charlwood, 9/Cable/Richardson, 10/Archer/Christie
Cup Class – 1/Bell/Bell (Champions), 2/Kirby/Kirby, 3/Gray/Conil, 4/Robinson/Fairhurst, 5/Clarke/Ensor, 6/Pottinger/Dodds, 7/Bell/Colbrook, 8/Laidlow/Laidlow, 9/Peach/Edwards, 10/Williams/Pitt,
F2 Class – 1/Atkinson/Middleton/Smith (Champions), 2/Lambert/Haynes, 3/Founds/Walmsley, 4/Crawford/Hardie, 5/Gibson/Gibbons, 6/Crowe/Crowe.

TV Highlights will be available shortly on our Youtube Channel.
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Media Matters – Barry Nutley

Ellis/Clement back at Knockhill to challenge Blackstock and Rosney


The Jock Taylor Memorial meeting over the weekend of 2/3 September is a well-supported stand-alone event which will see the “Best of British” go head-to-head for points in the penultimate round of the British Sidecar Championship. It is a true festival of sidecars spanning all classes and ages, including a guest appearance by Steve Webster MBE on his World Championship winning two-stroke outfit.

This meeting is supported by the well-known and respected Express Tyre Services organisation, who have a long-standing sidecar racing tradition, and already actively support several of the teams competing at Knockhill.

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British Sidecar Championship

Blackstock and Rosney lead the charge to Thruxton 11-13 August

The fifth round of the British Sidecar Championship heads to the rapid Thruxton circuit, off the back of three races last weekend at Cadwell Park.

Well known as a daunting prospect for many passengers, this airfield track combines high speed with enormous cornering forces threatening to throw the passenger off the outfit at any moment.

Todd Ellis and Emmanuelle Clement (Brookland Yamaha LCR) took double victories here last year and on paper are very much the team to beat. They are combining their British Championship season with the FIM World Championship, being reigning champions in both. As a result, they missed out on three races last weekend at Cadwell Park, opting to defend their world title at the Red Bull Ring in Austria. In doing so, they sacrificed the lead in the British Championship. The DHR/Express Tyre Services Yamaha of Lewis Blackstock and Paddy Rosney profited hugely as a result, and now come to Hampshire with a twenty-four-point lead in the Championship.

Last year at Thruxton also saw double podium spots for George Holden and Oscar Lawrence with their Kawasaki, and they too have jumped ahead of Christie brothers Sam and Tom, who also headed for Austria last weekend. Craig Currie/Justin Sharp now sit fifth with their Honda ahead of Martin Kirk/Kyle Masters.

The Cup class is much more finely balanced behind leaders Phil/Carl Bell. With Phil Hyde on board last weekend, the Marin Motorsport Yamaha of Bell eked out a twenty-six-point lead from Brian Gray/Clement Conil, who in turn are just two points clear of Paul and Tom Kirby. Cadwell hat trick exponents Luke Williams and Jason Pitt are hell-bent on further gains, so their progress from sixth place in the standings should be fun to watch.

All-dominant Pete Founds/Jevan Walmsley have the F2 lead, with little or no opposition to date.

Three rounds and six races remain, with no further FIM world clashes and Ellis/Clement in determined mood. The permutations are endless, but Blackstock/Rosney know what they must do, and the season is now set up for a grandstand finish.

Eurosport TV are covering both races, with highlights to follow on our Youtube channel. Make sure you miss none of the action by staying

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Media Matters – Barry Nutley

British Sidecar Championship

Blackstock and Rosney head the table with hat-trick at Cadwell

The weather turned nasty as we drove into the paddock on Friday for the fifth running of the Cadwell Park Sidecar Revival with more torrential rain forecast for Saturday. That did not detract from the strong entry, despite other events taking place the same weekend.

The good news for the GP class entrants was that series leaders Todd Ellis/Emmanuelle Clement were in Austria fighting for World honours, as were second in the title chase Sam and Tom Christie. Hannafin teammates Rupert Archer/Adam Christie along with L&W Contractor’s Kevin Cable/Chaz Richardson were also chasing the same dream.
Former champions Steve Kershaw and Ryan Charlwood were the final high-profile defectors, but they had not entirely committed to the British series anyway.
That left the door wide open for Lewis Blackstock/Paddy Rosney DHR/Express Tyre Services Yamaha to gain big points, thus elevating them from third place in the standings. That they did with aplomb.
Opportunity also beckoned for George Holden/Oscar Lawrence, and Craig Currie/Justin Sharp who arrived at Cadwell in fourth and fifth places.

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Ellis/Clement lead into round two at Donington Park 19-21 May

Just three weeks after winning the single opening race at Oulton Park, Todd Ellis and Emmanuelle Clement (LCR Brookland Yamaha) will arrive at the famous Donington Park circuit for what they hope will be more of the same in their defence of the title on 19-21 May. With just five points splitting the top three crews, there is every expectation this will be a cracking weekend.

Sponsor for the Donington Park round is Rowe Motor Oil, a German-based company with a strong tradition in Motorsport.

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Rain stops race one play, but Ellis/Clement take race two in style.

The “new look British Sidecar Championship” arrived in Cheshire with a full grid and a galaxy of stars lining up to kick-start the new season.

Three classes within each race were always going to stir the pot and that proved to be a popular and interesting development. The weather was initially kind for both free practice and qualifying, but that was not to last.

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British Sidecars are “GO” Oulton Park April 29th-May 1st

The picturesque parkland venue of Oulton Park is the scene for the opening round of the 2023 British Sidecar Championship with two races on the schedule alongside the Bennetts British Superbikes.

A change of the rules allowing short and long outfits to compete on level terms has resulted in a strong field, thereby addressing the problem of last season which saw a recurrence of dwindling grids.

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British Sidecars Logo

New season and a new look for the British Sidecar Championship

This winter has seen frantic activity behind the scenes as the premier domestic sidecar race series grappled with the departure of its long-standing promoter RKB-F1 Motorsport.

A small team of sponsors and ardent supporters with former Grand Prix competitor Andy Peach at the helm has rescued the series from an uncertain future. The title sponsor has yet to be confirmed, as budgets and funding are still being finalised, but everything else is in place in terms of infrastructure. Mike Dommett and his Bemsee organisation will handle the administration and entries.

A seven-round, fifteen-race championship calendar has been announced, with five rounds running alongside the Bennetts British Superbike Championship as before, with that relationship heading into its twelfth season. The BSB October finale at Brands Hatch will carry the now traditional double points structure. Eurosport TV have again pledged their support, with both races shown live, either on TV or the Eurosport App.

The two “stand alone” rounds are the ever-popular Cadwell Sidecar Revival in early August run and promoted by Roger Body. The Revival has grown year-on-year and is a firm favourite with the fans. The comes a first for the series with a trip to Knockhill for the Jock Taylor Memorial early September. This annual event is run by Boris Stroud to commemorate the life and remarkable success of the Scottish World Champion.

It will be a fitting tribute attracting the best sidecar racers in the country as the long F1 outfits do battle with their shorter cousins over the 1.3-mile lap.

The ravages of the pandemic are now behind us, although the impact of the disruption is still being felt in many areas of sport. Dwindling sidecar grids were an unwelcome feature during 2022, so that problem needed addressing.

A change of regulations will now see both short and long chassis outfits competing head-to-head, with three classes as follows. 1/ GP Class (long F1 chassis, Minimum weight 370 kilos), 2/ Cup Class (long F1 chassis, minimum 395 kilos), 3/ F2 Class (FSRA rules minimum 370 kilos).

The points system is revised in line with the changes announced for the BSB other classes. This will give added spice to the track action, whilst keeping grid sizes high.

We will continue to bring you all the news and stories as they unfold, with our website now dedicated solely to the British series.

The 2023 calendar is –

April 29-May 1 Oulton Park BSB

May 19-21 Donington Park BSB

July 7-9 Snetterton BSB

August 5-6 Cadwell Revival

August 11-13 Thruxton BSB

September 2-3 Knockhill Jock Taylor

October 13-15 Brands Hatch BSB