BCTG Elite League - Wednesfield v Birmingham
Location: Wednesfield Aces CSC
Event:30 June 2012
In front of the TV cameras this cycle speedway meeting had everything the film crew could have wished for with tense races exclusions galore and drama in several races. With the flash floods only days before, the track had been submerged in water but the surface held up for the scene of some action packed racing.
Heat one got off after a tapes malfunction for a 5-5 shared heat with Aces’ Ben Mould taking the chequered flag. Wednesfield looked like they had a 7-3 in the bag in heat two as Scott Doherty squeezed under Jack Harrold just coming out of the last turn to join his partner Gavin Wheeler to cross the finish line but this was not to be. The referee judged that Wheeler had impeded the Birmingham rider by slowing and team riding his partner through. Wheeler was excluded giving Birmingham a 6-3.
Birmingham went further in the lead in the next heat when Lee Aris was excluded after Chris Timms tried to pass on the inside and ended up on the centre green, Birmingham won the re-run 6-3 and they made it a 6-4 in the next race with a win from Marcus Wadhams.
The Aces were starting to slip behind with only four races gone and a eight points difference but they steadied with a 5-5. Heat six saw Nathan Groves excluded for a tapes infringement and Johnson and team mate Aris took a 7-2 for the Aces putting them back in the match again trailing by just 3 points. The next three races leading up to the interval were all drawn 5-5s halftime 42-45.
Another 5-5 after the break after Heard won the tussle with Aris to taking the race win. Wednesfield then suffered a major setback with a double exclusion in race eleven with Scott Doherty moving whilst under starters orders and Gav Wheeler in the rerun for taking the Birmingham rider to the extreme of the track. The re-run gave the Monarchs a 7-0 heat win putting the Aces ten points in arrears.
Wednesfield's luck was really down, suffering another exclusion in the next race. This time with Ben Mould out for using excessive force, a 6-3 went to Birmingham in the re-run having brought in super sub Wadhams. The Aces now trailing by 13 points 50-63 with just six races remaining to pull the match back and they set about that task in the very next heat when the pairing of Aris & Griffiths gained a 7-3 over Birmingham’s pair of Rychardski & Pietak.
Jewkes & Wheeler calmed it a bit in the next with a 5-5 against Birmingham’s Heard & Timms and then Aces super substitute Mark Griffiths teamed with Doherty for a 6-4 to bring the Aces a bit closer at just seven behind. There were now only three races left to do something. With a 5-5 in the next, still seven behind two heats left Wednesfield made a substitution to bring in CJ for a reserve ride teamed up with former British champ Gavin Wheeler. This gave a super 7-3 against Millward & Wadhams setting it up for a possible fight back victory in the final heat with just three points in it at 80-83.
Both the teams made changes and brought in their reserves with Aces using Griffiths paired with Lee Aris and Birmingham having saved Paul Heard for the last heat with Chris Timms. From the start it was Aris and Heard shoulder to shoulder around the first turn but Heard managed to just squeeze in front down the back straight and from that point there was no catching him. It ended in a 6-4 to Birmingham and the league points taken from the Aces.
Wednesfield Aces 84: Mark Griffiths 14+1,Ben Mould 14+1,Chris Jewkes 13+1,Lee Aris 12+2,Gavin Wheeler 10+1,Ricki Johnson 10+1,Scott Doherty 6,Luke Draisey 5.
Birmingham Monarchs 89: Paul Heard 18+1,Marcus Wadhams 16,Scott Millward 12+2,Domnick Rychardski 12,Chris Timms 12,Jack Harrold 11+1,Konrad Pietak 5+1,Nathan Groves 3.
Wednesfield 80: Matt Haddock 15,Jordan Holdcroft 15,Haydn Rowley 12,Dave Meaqnley 10+2,Sam Parr 10+1,Tom Haddock 10+1,Arron O'Brien 8.
Birmingham 49: Mark Winwood 12,Paul Timms 11,Reece Winwood 9,Ewan Hancock 7,Phil Widdas 6,Natalie Timms 4.