Big drive challenge is top gear for Doncaster youngsters

Young drivers who took part in the Young Driver Challenge Final
Young drivers who took part in the Young Driver Challenge Final

Four youngsters from Doncaster geared up for a big challenge after they were all chosen to take part in a national driving competition.

Ben Spoor, 13, Benjamin Atkinson, 13, ben Jones, 11, and Benjamin Owen, 12, showed they had the right stuff after snapping up places in the Young Driver Challenge final.

Each finalist was chosen among a group of only 40 following hundreds of applications and a rigorous selection process. They all travelled to the British Motor Museum in Gaydon, Warwickshire, to compete for the title of the UK’s best young driver – with all competitors under the legal driving age of 17.

Those taking part battled it out in two age categories, 10-13 and 14-16, while being scored by judges on a variety of the driving skills they have been perfecting during lessons.

The young driver scheme, which offers lessons for 10 to 17-year-olds at venues across Britain, was set up in 2009 with the aim of creating safer newly qualified drivers.

Independent research shows that young driver past pupils are half as likely to have an accident than other young novive drivers who have not had the benefit of taking the scheme. The scheme operates at 45 venues across the country making it the largest provider of driving lessons in the UK for those who are aged under 17.

Ben Jones said: “I have really enjoyed taking part in the Young Driver Challenge 2016 and it was a really amazing feeling to make the final of the competition.”

Ben Spoor said: “There were some great drivers here who made the final and so I think everyone who made it here should all be very proud of ourselves!”

Benjamin Atkinson said “We were really put to the test with our driving, with activities like parallel parking, reversing, tight steering and emergency stops, as well as just showing our skills at independent driving.”

Benjamin Owen said: “I’ve had a lot of fun, and it’s good to know that I have a strong understanding of how to drive and be safe on the roads, which will be really useful when I turn 17.”