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Thirteen-year-old powerboat racer Ben Jelf wins the European Championships for the third year running

Ben Jelf
Ben Jelf

Teenager Ben Jelf is the most successful British powerboat junior of all time after winning the European Championships for the third year running.

The 13-year-old from Maidstone travelled to Sweden for the two-day tournament. Heavy winds saw Friday’s action cancelled so it all came down to Saturday.

Jelf took pole position by almost a second from Estonian Paul Zujenkov. The Peters & May Team racer went on to win all three heats to take the title and confirm his status as Britain’s most successful junior.

He said: “Securing pole position put me in a good place to secure the title again but I knew it was going to be hard. The other racers would be pushing me all the way and the slightest mistake or error could have cost me the title.

“So I had to focus and just raced to the best of my ability and hoped it was enough. I’m happy to have secured the European title again, it means a lot to me and all my team and shows that all our hard work is paying off.”

Jelf is in his fourth year of powerboat racing. He became Britain’s youngest world champion, aged 11, and has won six British Championships.

He’s also taken gold and silver medals in the World GT15 Championships, along with two world speed records and three British speed records.

Jelf is focusing on retaining his British titles and looking forward to the World GT15 Championships in Nottingham at the end of August.

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