REIGNING Thundersport GB champion Sam Thompson has made a successful start to the British Superbikes Series.

The 18-year-old Bournemouth rider claimed a podium place in the Triumph Triple Challenge event at Brands Hatch over the Easter weekend.

Thompson, racing a Triumph 675cc, qualified first in the cup class before finishing runner-up in the opening race and fifth in the second.

In front of the Eurosport television cameras, Thompson saved his best to last by winning the third and final race.

Thompson is second in the cup championship, only five points behind the leader, going into the second round at Oulton Park in two weeks time.

Last season, Thompson became the youngest Thundersport GB champion on a stock 600cc motorbike.

The Triumph Triple Challenge is a support class in the main British Superbike Series.