Steven Burke inspires Colne youngster

Nathan Hawthorn
Nathan Hawthorn

THE Olympic legacy is to inspire a generation.

But young Nathan Hawthorn has already been inspired by his hero Steven Burke’s exploits, and is busy creating his own headlines!

The 12-year-old, who rides for Eastlands Velo, and is also a member of Cycle Sport Pendle, was crowned 2012 National Youth Track champion at Manchester Velodrome on Monday, only three years after taking up the sport.

The Fisher-More pupil started track racing a year ago at the Velodrome on a track bike bought from Burke, who recently won gold in the team pursuit at London 2012.

On Monday Nathan was competing against 30 other Under 12 boys from across the UK, and to win the championship he had to ride an omnium, consisting of five events - a 1,500m individual pursuit, three match sprints and a 500m time trial.

Nathan won all five events, giving him the lowest possible score to win the omnium and the title of National Youth Track Champion 2012.

He can now wear the national jersey for track, and he also won a gold championship medal.

Nathan said it was meeting Burke and seeing his gold medal at the Ride with Bradley Wiggins event in Barnoldswick recently that gave him the drive to go and win the title, and he hopes to be as good a rider as Steven when he is older!

He also thanks the coaches at Cycle Sport Pendle and Eastlands Velo for teaching him invaluable cycling skills and how to enjoy cycling at the same time.

Hugh Porter, the announcer for the event, praised Nathan for his riding during the day and stated that he had great potential.

Nathan has had an outstanding track and road season and is currently ranked UK number one for his age group in this category by a considerable margin.