||Last Updated: Apr 15th, 2016 - 09:01:34
BIRMINGHAM reserve Jack Parkinson-Blackburn became the youngest ever Grand Finalist of the British Under-21 Championships on Thursday.
The 15-year-old highlighted his potential once again with another breathtaking performance at his local track, Sheffield.
The reigning British Youth Champion notched two heat wins on his first ever appearance in the prestigious Under-21 event as he scored 11 points from his five programmed rides.
He then pulled off one of the most memorable races of his career so far as he held off Cradley captain Max Clegg and Sheffield reserve Nathan Greaves to book his place in the Grand Final.
While he may have finished fourth in the showpiece heat, it was certainly a night he will never forget.
Brummies No.1 Zach Wajtknecht narrowly missed out on a semi-final place himself on the count back rule while Jack Smith and Danyon Hume both had encouraging nights also.
Team manager Graham Drury was full of praise for the quartet and is predicting big things for them in the future.
Said Drury: "I can't speak highly enough of all four of our representatives - they've done themselves proud and they've certainly done Birmingham Speedway proud too.
"This was the first ever British Under-21 Final any of them have ever raced in and they really can hold their heads up so high.
"Before the meeting I told them to go out there, soak up the atmosphere, and enjoy the occasion - and boy did they all do that!
"Danyon got a race win to his name, Jack Smith put in an encouraging, solid performance and Zach was so, so close to reaching the semi-finals.
"Naturally it's Jack Parkinson-Blackburn who will take all the plaudits and what a mature performance he put in.
"It's hard to remember he is only 15-years-of age!
"To do what he did and reach the Grand Final at the first attempt is remarkable and it's a moment he'll remember for the rest of his life.
"Tonight was a huge learning curve for all the lads and we can't wait for our first league meeting on Friday."
The Brummies travel to Coventry (April 15) with tapes up at 7.30.
BRITISH UNDER-21 FINAL, at Sheffield
1. Josh Bates
2. Robert Lambert
3. Adam Ellis
4. Jack Parkinson-Blackburn
Qualifying scores: Robert Lambert 15, Adam Ellis 13, Josh Bates 11, Jack Parkinson-Blackburn 11, Max Clegg 11, Nathan Greaves 9, Zac Wajtknecht 9, Oliver Greenwood 8, James Shanes 7, Jack Smith 6, Danyon Hume 5, Danny Phillips 4, Ellis Perks 4, Josh Bailey 3, Danno Verge 2, Alfie Bowtell 1, Liam Carr 1 (reserve), Ben Basford 0 (reserve)
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