13-year-olds compete to be named best young driver in the country

Daniel Roper from Southsea at the 2018 Young Driver Challenge final
Daniel Roper from Southsea at the 2018 Young Driver Challenge final
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TWO drivers have made the finals of a national competition – despite only being 13.

Daniel Roper and Evie Taylor, both 13 and from the Portsmouth area, have made the final of the Young Driver Challenge 2019, which will take place at the NEC in September.
The competition is run by Young Driver, which runs pre-17 driving lessons. The scheme, which is sponsored by Vauxhall, aims to develop a safer generation of young drivers. Young driver (established in 2009) has provided more than 740,000 lessons to people over 10 and 4ft 8in or over. 
The lessons, which range from £9.99 to £125 depending on what package you choose, encourage young drivers to adopt a responsible and safe driving style, with challenges ranging from manouvering a slalom to different types of parking. Top marks are given to those who demonstrate strong levels of control and awareness whilst driving. 
Daniel, who goes to Priory School in Southsea, made the final in 2017 and 2018, and said: ‘I’m absolutely delighted to have made the final of the Young Driver Challenge for the third time. Learning to drive before the age of 17 has been a great experience and so much fun. It’s also helping prepare me for when I do get on the road for real - which will be as soon as I turn 17.’

Evie Taylor, 13, who goes to The Cowplain School

Evie Taylor, 13, who goes to The Cowplain School

Evie, who goes to The Cowplain School, will make her first appearance at the final, and said: 'It was unexpected, but I am confident I can do well and remember all the things the instructors have taught me. I can't wait to go.’
Pupils will drive a new Vauxhall Corsa SRI with a qualified ADI instructor in the passenger seat.

Sue Waterfield, head of marketing for Young Driver said: 'Every year the quality of driving we see from these young people astounds us. They take their learning very seriously and it's a great way of reinforcing all those important safety messages when they don't have the pressure of passing a test as quickly as possible.'