Portsmouth driver determined to stay at the summit

Ricky Stevens, right   Picture: John Mushet
Ricky Stevens, right Picture: John Mushet

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After their major setback at Knockhill at the end of June, British F1 Sidecar champions Ricky Stevens and Ryan Charlwood are back together for round four of the championship at Snetterton, Norfolk this weekend.

Round three of the Hyundai Heavy Industries British Sidecar Championship didn’t go swimmingly for Portsmouth driver Stevens and Dorset passenger Charlwood after the latter fell off the outfit during the first practice session and dislocated his shoulder in the process.

Fellow passenger Charlie Richardson stood in for Charlwood, making it possible for Stevens to secure the overall lead in the championship.

Stevens said: ‘Losing Ryan before the racing had even begun was obviously a game changer – part of our success is that we are so well matched.

‘We had hoped for a triple victory that weekend, which would have put us in a really comfortable place for the rest of the championship.

‘But in the end we had to settle for an eighth and two third places.

‘We did manage to grab the lead in the championship but with only 17 points ahead of the competition, we will have to keep fighting tooth and nail to remain at the top of the rankings.’

With just two weeks between rounds three and four, Charlwood has been on an intense recovery programme which has included daily treatments and gentle exercise.

He said: ‘This injury couldn’t have come at a worse time.

‘From round three onwards, the racing schedule is pretty ruthless, with two weeks or less between each rounds.

‘I have had almost daily sessions in a hyperbaric chamber to speed up the recovery process.

‘I have also undergone laser therapy and physiotherapy and the therapists are really positive about the way my shoulder has healed.

‘I’ve also had to adapt my exercise routine.

‘In order to regain the strength I need to race, gentle and low impact exercise has been key.’

Stevens and Charlwood will race at 1.35pm tomorrow afternoon and 5.25pm on Sunday.