Teenager aims to drive off with top prize

Brought to you by the News Guardian.
Brought to you by the News Guardian.

A teenager is hoping to drive off with a top award.

Christian Dickens has made it to the national final of the 2015 Young Drive Challenge.

The 16-year-old, a pupil at Longbenton Community College, will head to the NEC on September 5, to battle it out with the 39 other finalists in the competition run by Young Driver, the UK’s largest provider of under-17 driving tuition.

Christian will take part in the 14-16 age category.

Entrants were judged on both practical driving skill and theoretical knowledge.

As well as being tested on manoeuvres and skills such as parallel parking, braking, steering, judgement and positioning, youngsters also had to complete the Goodyear Driving Academy, an interactive online driving simulator.

Prizes include 40 pre and post-17 driving lessons provided by Goodyear and £500 off a car insurance premium.

Christian said: “I was so thrilled when I was told that I was one of the highest scorers and had made the final.

“Ever since I was three-years-old I knew that all I wanted to do was to learn to drive and I am so looking forward to the final event.”

Kim Stanton, from Young Driver said: “We’re delighted for the finalists and would like to offer our congratulations.”

“They have all worked really worked hard, and should feel very proud of themselves.

“The final will be a great event, and the judges will really be putting these young drivers to the test.

“People would be amazed at the quality of the driving.

“Our aim has always been to create a safer next generation of young drivers. The current accident rate for youngsters is shockingly high - one in five crash within six months of passing their test.

“We believe it is vital to get youngsters learning to drive at an earlier age, so they can gain more experience and when they’re more naturally receptive to safety messages.”

For more information about the challenge, or to book a Young Driver lesson, visit www.youngdriver.eu or call 0844 371 9010.