The FIM Corona Extra Superbike World Championship heads to Silverstone this weekend (26-28 May) for the fifth round of the action-packed two-wheeled race series. As a preview to one of the biggest bike events on the UK sporting calendar, a number of riders, including England’s James Toseland and Chris Walker, turned out in their national football strips to represent their home country in the Silverstone World Cup.

With the football World Cup fast approaching the riders were only too keen to pull on the shirt of their national team and walk out on the “hallowed turf” at Silverstone. Eight riders took part in a ‘Beat the Keeper’ style knockout tournament, which challenged the riders to dribble a ball around a set of cones before taking on goalkeeper Sarah Marshall – a Silverstone employee who plays football for Coventry City’s Ladies team.

Riders flying the flag for their country included James Toseland, Chris Walker and Craig Jones – all representing England, France’s Regis Laconi, Noriyuki Haga of Japan, Australian Steve Martin, Germany’s Max Neukirchner and, adding a bit of Brazilian flare to proceedings, Alex Barros.

All the riders were given three attempts to score past goalkeeper Marshall, and the two riders completing all three shots in the fastest time went through to the ultimate test of nerve in any World Cup showdown – penalties!

England and Australia went through to a dramatic Silverstone World Cup Final, represented by Toseland and Martin, who both demonstrated they are just as comfortable with a football as they are powering a World Superbike around Silverstone’s famous circuit.

Toseland eventually fired England to World Cup victory after slotting two of his three penalties past Silverstone’s No. 1 goalkeeper, Marshall.

All the riders entered into the spirit of a thoroughly entertaining tournament, and jubilant celebrations followed the match winning strike by Toseland. Inspired by the England World Cup winning team of 1966, all the riders invaded the pitch and proceeded to carry the Silverstone World Cup winner, and 2004 World Superbike Champion around on their shoulders – celebrations that were reminiscent of the legendary Bobby Moore being lifted above the heads of his England team mates at Wembley.

Speaking after his Silverstone World Cup victory Toseland commented, “Let’s just hope this isn’t the only trophy I’ll be lifting at Silverstone this weekend. I just hope I can carry this winning streak into the two Superbike races on Sunday.”



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