THIRTEEN-year-old Jack Tennyson, a pupil at the Laurence Jackson School in Guisborough, has achieved notable success in downhill mountain biking competitions across the country.

In October, the English Championships of downhill mountain biking were held near Oswestry and on a fast, narrow and muddy course, Jack managed to secure third place out of a field of 22.

Reaching speeds of 40kph on a steep hillside on a bicycle is very dangerous, and during the weekend two air ambulances were called for riders who had crashed.

Jack, pictured, wears safety equipment similar to motocross riders – a full face helmet, body armour and a neck brace. He trains four to five times a week to compete, and this is his first of two years in the juvenile class for 13-14 year olds.

Also in October, the regional championships were held at Kielder, Northumberland.

The track is new, and was the hardest of all the tracks ridden this season. It was so steep and technical in places that 35 competitors packed up and went home after the practice day.

Of those left, most opted for one run instead of two, just to be on the safe side as crashes were far too frequent. Jack finished a creditable second in these championships, behind the current British champion.

To top it all, last week Jack was jointly awarded the Laurence Jackson School Sports Person of the Year trophy, an honour which he was thrilled to receive.

He said: “There are so many amazing sporty students at Laurence Jackson School that to receive this award in Year 9 makes all the hard work worth it. All the energy drained from me when I heard my results and then my name called out at the awards evening, but it was great to be recognised for my achievements.”