A young female motorbike racer from Erdington is setting her sights on competing in the British and World Superbike Championships after agreeing a new sponsorship deal.
Jamie Hanks-Elliott, who already has two race titles to her name, has joined forces with automotive power tool and garage equipment supplier AutoJack as she looks to take the next steps in her career.
The 17-year-old is looking to follow in the footsteps of her Grandparents Roy and Rose and parents Paul and Julie, who have all competed in the sidecar championships, with her nan becoming the first woman to stand on the Isle of Man TT rostrum after finishing 2nd in 1968.
This season will see her ride her Kawasaki 400cc across eight rounds of the Thundersport Championships and the ambition is to finish top five in as many races as possible that take place at tracks including Anglesey, Brands Hatch, Cadwell Park and Donnington.
Backing from Wolverhampton-based AutoJack will help Hanks Racing meet race and travel fees, as well as giving them access to vital equipment and tools that will be used in the maintenance and servicing of the bike.
“This is a very big year for my motorsport career, so it’s great to have additional sponsorship on board,” explained Jamie, who will soon be combining racing with studying Sports Rehabilitation at University of Nottingham.
“I’ve been racing since I was 13, preferring to ride solo as I could do that at an earlier age. The idea was to go into sidecar racing when I was old enough, but I enjoy competing on my own too much and the plan now is to try to get some podium finishes this season with view to wild card entries in the British Superbike Championship.”
She continued: “At first there was only a few girls taking part, but I think a lot more women have been inspired to compete and we certainly match the men we are racing against. When we jump on the bike, we’re all equal.
“The more we progress, the more support I need and at the moment it is very much a family affair with my pit crew currently made up of my Grandad, my Dad and my Mom. Getting more companies on board was the aim, so we’re delighted that AutoJack has joined the likes of Scott Leathers, Tony Else, 100% Suspensions, 151s and PFM Brakes.”
AutoJack has enjoyed significant growth since it was launched in 2016, with automotive enthusiasts, detailers, fabricators and mechanics all tapping into its 100-strong range of high-quality products.
This is the first time that the company has entered into a motorsport partnership, with the relationship coming about after a chance meeting between Jamie’s Dad Paul and Managing Director Fred Evans over a power generator used for tyre warmers.
“We see AutoJack as an up-and-coming challenger brand and this is exactly what we see in Jamie – the opportunity to become one of her main sponsors was perfect timing for us,” explained Fred, who runs the business with his brothers Bill and Dave Evans.
“She aligns perfectly with our brand values of always striving to be better and we’re really excited to see how she progresses this season. The deal will help towards race fees and clothing, whilst we are also giving the team access to any product in our range.”
He went on to add: “It’s great to see more women racing on an equal stage with men and we’re confident Jamie has the potential to live up her family reputation and put the Midlands firmly on the motorbike racing map.”
AutoJack offers over 100 different products, ranging from tool storage, generators and compressors to socket sets and trolley jacks.
Sales are through the firm’s recently launched new website (www.autojacktools.co.uk), Amazon, eBay and The Range, with the company keen to build an automotive distribution network so customers can buy products from shop shelves across the UK.
Fred concluded: “To mark the new partnership, we’ve launched a special 5% discount on your first order once registered…all you need to do is quote #Hanks16.”