On Saturday the Ricardo Tormo circuit in Valencia was awash with warm sunshine although it took some time for the track to warm up.
The number of riders entered for the final round of the European talent Cup meant that qualifying had to take place in two separate groups. With the first group out at 08:45 immediately followed by the second at 10:25 the track was still cool.
Scott Ogden and Jack Hart were included in the first group with Ogden finished 9th overall with a lap time of 1:46.822. Jack Hart set a time of 1:48.379 putting him 19th quickest, which was impressive as the young Scott had been sick during the morning. Max Cook went out next and his time of 1:46.671 placed him 14th in group B.
Just after lunchtime the riders were back on the circuit. By now the temperatures had increased and lap times were falling. Hart managed to reduce his time to 1:45.994 placing him 15th in the Group A. Unfortunately, Scott Ogden was unable to benefit from the warmer track temperatures and registered a similar time to the morning session. This left him in 23rd place.
In group B Max Cook put in a determined performance to set a time of 1:44.748 less than 1.5 seconds from the fastest rider. Having finished seventh quickest Cook was adjudged to have infringed the qualifying rules by riding slowly in part of the qualifying session. Race direction penalised him 12 positions.
Last Chance Race
With Ogden’s second qualifying session not having gone to plan he had failed to qualify directly for the races on Sunday. As a result he joined ten riders in a “Last Chance Race” where the first two would be added to grid for tomorrow’s final race of the season.
After the sighting lap Ogden stalled his Honda NSF250R after accidentally clipping the kill switch when removing a tear off visor. He had to start from pit lane and dead last. At the end of the first lap he was four seconds behind the penultimate rider.
Despite this Ogden stuck to his task catching and overtaking that rider on the second lap and setting the fastest lap. The following lap he moved up to seventh overall as he went even faster around the four kilometre circuit. Three laps completed and Ogden was fifth.
Another lap and another position as Ogden went fourth overtaking between turns eleven and twelve. As they crossed the line with three laps to go he was on the back wheel of Noah Dettwiler battling for third place.
He quickly dispatched the Swiss rider leaving just two riders ahead. Unfortunately, the gap between Ogden and the leading pair was too much to close in the final lap. He finished third and set the fastest lap of the race by over 0.264 seconds. Ogden was unfortunately left to imagine what might have been.
The race took place on the Sunday at 12:00 and the track temperature was much warmer than the cool warm up experienced in the morning. Max Cook lined up 26th on the revised grid whilst Jack Hart would start four places further back.
The 18 lap race got underway cleanly enough with Max Cook making up five places in the first six laps. However, an incident involving Alejandro Diez led to the race being red-flagged.
As less than two thirds of the race had been completed the race was started again. The positions on the grid reflected those of where the riders had finished on lap eight. The race was reduced to five laps.
In such a short race it was very difficult to make much progress with everyone trying as hard as they could in what was effectively a sprint race. Max Cook eventually crossed the finish line in 21st place. Jack Hart came across the line in 34th position.