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Alex Nevill wins the Mini Challenge Cooper AM championship

By Steve Tervet

Alex Nevill has spoken of his relief at clinching the Mini Challenge Cooper AM title in a dramatic season finale.

Nevill, 24, arrived at Rockingham with a 35-point lead at the top of the standings but had to start from the back of the grid after breaking down in qualifying.

However, he battled through the field to win race one and followed that up with second place in race two.

Champion driver Alex Nevill on the podium Picture: David Young
Champion driver Alex Nevill on the podium Picture: David Young

The Dartford driver only needed to finish race three to be crowned champion but he went all-out again.

And after a terrific tussle with title rival Andy Godfrey, Nevill signed off by taking the chequered flag for the 11th time in a fantastic debut season.

He said: "It's a fantastic feeling. It was relief initially because it was the goal I've been working towards all year.

"It's been in my head the entire time, there's been days when it's not gone so well and it all comes down to that.

"When it's there in front of you, it's a very overwhelming feeling. It's incredible and I hope I get to taste it again.

"It was a really good weekend. It didn't start off in the best way but to be able to bounce back from that and bring the championship home was great.

"When I first realised there was a problem, I just laughed to myself. Of all the weekends for it to happen, it had to happen this weekend.

"I knew what the problem was straight away, I knew the boys could get fixed and we worked it out from there.

Alex Nevill in his Mini Picture: David Young
Alex Nevill in his Mini Picture: David Young

"It could have been worse. At least it happened in qualifying, not the race, so we were still able to recover the situation.

"It's the easiest sport for your equipment to let you down but you can't control that.

"You just have to accept it for what it is and keep your mind focused on the job at hand."

Nevill will step up to race in the Cooper Pro class next season.

He said: "It's the same car and it'll be another competitive series for us.

"We might need a little bit of help on the sponsorship front to make sure we can stay there for the full season but we're looking good for it.

"It's been a long, tiring season and it can be quite stressful at times so a nice winter break will be good."

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