Female rider given opportunity to race on world stage
Charley Oakland will ride in the European Women’s Championship at Donington Park this month.
The talented female rider will compete under The Bike Insurer banner at the East Midlands track in round four of the eight-round championship, which is part of the larger European Junior Cup (EJC) series.
Charley will be up against some of the most talented young riders in the world and will share the paddock with the leading riders in World Superbikes over the weekend.
“I was asked at the start of the season by The Bike Insurer if I would be interested in coming to Donington to see the European Women’s Championship,” said Charley.
“I thought that meant just to go and watch but I got a message last week to tell me to bring my leathers because I’d be riding!”
This season, Charley is competing in the Thundersport championships in the UK in the Super Twins 650 and 500 series.
Charley said: “The season’s gone pretty well so far. In nine races I’ve been on the podium seven times and that’s pushed me to first (and second!) in the women’s championship within Thundersport as I race in two classes.”
An easy choice
It’s that experience and success that led The Bike Insurer to select Charley for the EJC wildcard.
Dave Jackson, from The Bike Insurer, said: “Charley is one of the best young riders in the UK, regardless of gender, and we’re excited to be able to get her into the World Superbike paddock.
“The EJC is one of the best platforms for young riders in motorbike racing because of the travel and tracks involved – it gives a real taste of life as a pro-rider – and it’s something we’re proud to be involved in.
“The decision to pick Charley for Donington was a no brainer and we know she’ll do well.”
Confidence is high
At Donington however, Charley will be on the Honda CBR 650F that all riders use in the EJC. It’s a bike she’s not ridden yet but that doesn’t mean she’s fazed by the challenge.
“I know I’ll be going in with a bit less familiarity with the bike than the other riders but I’m going to give it my all. It would mean the world to me to climb the steps to the podium on the world stage but I’m not getting carried away just yet.”
Charley will know one other rider when she arrives in Donington, The Bike Insurer’s Dan Drayton who is taking part in a full season in the EJC.
It should be an exciting few days for the 21-year old from Lincolnshire when the race takes place on 24 May.
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