MATCH REPORT: 2018 Northern Individuals at Edinburgh
Edinburgh hosted the 2018 North and Scotland League individuals on Sunday, Rob Mawhood takes us through the events of the day, with photos by George Swanson.
The top five riders were so evenly matched, that this title would be decided by grid positions. Fraser Brundett taking full advantage of his favourable draw to win the title with 15 points, his one loss coming against Aiden Green in heat 7.
The four A & T riders were tied in first place on 11 points with just one race left each. Brundett beat Frank White to finish on 15, taking the championship after Sheffield’s Edward Balfour took full advantage of grid one in heat 10 to beat both Green and Duncan Whalley, the victory putting the Stars rider into a three-way tie for second place on 14 points.
The run-off had Green speed away from grid one to take the second place, White passing Balfour on the very last corner to complete a Team Green clean sweep of the podium places.
Scorers – Fraser Brundett (A & T) 15, Aiden Green (A & T) 14, Frank White (A & T) 14, Edward Balfour (Sheffield) 14, Duncan Whalley (A & T) 13, Maxwell Newsome (Edinburgh 11), Nathan Slight (Edinburgh) 10.
Pre-meeting favourite John White (A & T) raced to an unbeaten score, taking the under 13 title back to A & T for a second successive year, Emily Burgess the winner in 2017. Glasgow riders Ben Hutton and Zander Park filled the other podium places, the first time a Glasgow rider has picked up silverware at the Northern Individuals.
Scorers – John White (A & T) 16, Ben Hutton (Glasgow) 15, Zander Park (Glasgow) 14, Aaron Smith (Edinburgh) 13, Jemma McPherson (Edinburgh) 12, Amy McDonald (Edinburgh) 11.
Kielan Burton won Sheffield’s only title, picking up the under 16 trophy after winning all four races against Skye Mitchell.
Scorers – Kielan Burton (Sheffield) 16, Skye Mitchell (Edinburgh) 12.
Adam Turnbull and Ciaran Collins both made their late entries pay off by taking first and second place in the under 19 final. Neither rider were in the original draw, which had installed Niall Morton as pre-meeting favourite, but both took full advantage of the entry being re-opened.
Adam beat Ciaran in heat one, the A & T rider then reeling of four wins to finish tied on 19 points, then dropped his only point to teammate Eryk Motala. Morton’s chance of silverware disappeared in his fourth race, when he came off trying to pass Collins. Lewis Alsop (Fife) won three of his five races to fully earn his place on the podium.
Scorers – Adam Turnbull (Bury) 19, Ciaran Collins (A & T) 19, Lewis Alsop (Fife) 18, Niall Morton (Sheffield) 17, James Keenleyside (Fife) 16, John Hutton (Fife) 14, Kielan Burton (Sheffield) 13, Jake Ferguson (Fife) 13, Eryk Motala (Bury) 13, Dan Thompson (Northumbria) 11.
The Vets championship attracted the biggest field of the day, fourteen riders taking to the track. Paul Graham winning the title with an unbeaten 20 point maximum score. Graham, as with Turnbull and Collins earlier, taking full advantage of the entries being re-opened (he was not in the original draw).
Jason Keith was second again, having finished runner-up to Terry Norman (2017) and Gavin Parr (2014). The final podium place decided when Fife rider Craig Hardie defeated Terry Kirkup (Northumbria) in a run-off, they having tied on 17 points.
Scorers – Paul Graham (A & T) 20, Jason Keith (Edinburgh) 19, Craig Hardie (Fife) 17, Terry Kirkup (Northumbria) 17, Joe Beuckmann (Glasgow) 16, Shane Gray (Glasgow) 15, Neil Swanson (Edinburgh) 14, Mark Brundrett (A & T) 13, Colin Gray (Glasgow) 11, Dode Mitchell (Edinburgh) 11, Jim Alexander (Glasgow) 10, John Murphy (Edinburgh) 9, Iain MacDonald (Edinburgh) 8, Paul Thompson (Northumbria) 7.
The fledgling Fife club gained their first title winner with Maja Nowacyzk winning three of four races to add her name to the role of honour that includes two ex-World Champions (Laura Watson and Vicky Brown). Skye Mitchell became the only rider on the day to win medals in two categories,having picked up silver for finishing second in the under 16.
Scorers – Maja Nowacyzk (Fife) 15, Skye Mitchell (Edinburgh) 13, Jemma McPherson (Edinburgh) 7,Amy McDonald (Edinburgh) 5.
It was a fitting finish to the 40th anniversary celebrations for Edinburgh, that Falcons rider Jake Slight would win the blue riband event and be crowned Northern League Champion. The title going to an Edinburgh rider for the first time.
Jake finished with 19 points, having to defeat Niall Morton in a run-off after he too totalled 19 points. The Sheffield rider more than happy with silver after his disappointment in the under 19 event. Consistency paid dividends for Kyle Holland, who completed the podium after scoring 16 points.
Top 3 scorers – Jake Slight (Edinburgh) 19, Niall Morton (Sheffield) 19, Kyle Holland (A & T) 16