MATCH REPORT: Mixed fortunes for Sheffield in Scotland
Fife Revolution maintained their unbeaten start in Northern League Two with a 104 – 71 victory over visiting Sheffield Stars (who were themselves unbeaten).
Stars gave away 25 points due to use of Division one rider Niall Morton. The final outcome was never going to be in doubt, but the racing on the track was of the highest order. A Jake Ferguson/Harry Langdale 7-3 in heat 4 broke a run of drawn heats.
The Stars first race advantage came in heat 6 with a brilliant 7-3 from Kielan Burton/Niall Morton over Craig Hardie/Ferguson. Morton led from the tapes, with Ferguson making a good pass on Burton going into lap 2. With Morton holding his raceline the riders behind bunched up. Burton made a brilliant outside pass on Ferguson entering lap 3, his speed took him round Hardie down the back straight (with Morton helping to close the door on Hardie), ending a quite remarkable race.
Fife hit back immediately with their second 7 pointer, this time from the Vas Hill/Lewis Alsop pairing. Sheffield riders were first home in the next five races, four of which were drawn heats. The on track result swung well into Revolutions favour with their third 7 pointer from the Hardie/Ferguson pairing. The match finished with the impressive Hill beating Niall Morton to deny the Edinburgh based rider his maximum.
Craig Hardie 12+1, Jake Ferguson 9+1, Vas Hill 15+1, Lewis Alsop 15+2, John Hutton 16+1, Harry Langdale 6, Josh Adamson 6+1.
Luke Morton 15+2, Rob Mawhood 9, Niamh Morton 6+1, Laura Watson 10, Niall Morton 18+1, Kielan Burton 13+1.
Sheffield had no under 13’s, leaving Fife to race to an 18-0 victory in the league three match.
Sheffield then moved on to Glasgow, to complete their Scottish short tour. Again the Stars were giving their opponents a 25 point start, this time Sheffield came out victors by 90-85 in a match that ebbed and flowed. Three 7-3 race wins in the opening six races, two of which featured Laura Watson, had seen the Stars shave 14 points of the deficit and put them in the driving seat.
The wheels came of slightly in heat 7, with a brilliant 7 pointer for the Cyclones from Andy MacDougal/Colin Gray. Sheffield responded with 7 pointers in the next two races, Watson involved for a third time, reducing the arrears to seven. Joe Beuckmann then beat Niall Morton in a shared heat 10, with Glasgow following up with a 6-4 in heat 11 (after Luke Morton fell when under pressure from MacDougal).
The Cyclones now led by nine with just four races left. Sheffield found another gear and posted 7-3 wins in the next three races, Laura Watson getting her fourth assist after seeing home Niamh Morton ahead of Beuckmann (who had beaten Niall Morton in his previous race).
Sheffield chairman Rob Mawhood gained his third race win in heat 14, with Kielan Burton holding out the improving Chris Flynn (who had got better with each race on his debut). Sheffield now led by three and increased that to five with Niall Morton taking the win in the last race, his Dad passing Beuckmann on the last corner (The Glasgow rider now a spent force).
Joe Beuckmann 11+1, Jim Alexander 9, Andy MacDougal 15+2, Colin Gray 11, Lachlan MacDougal 6, Chris Flynn 8.
Luke Morton 14+1, Rob Mawhood 16, Niamh Morton 14+1, Laura Watson 13+4, Niall Morton 17+2, Kielan Burton 16+1.
Glasgow won the under 13s league three match by 28-0, Sheffield again having no riders to race.