MATCH REPORT: Two wins and a defeat for Sheffield
There was an air of inevitability about Stockport’s 108-70 Northern League One victory over visiting Sheffield. The Stars last won a first team fixture against Stockport in 2005, a sequence that now stands at 25 successive wins for Stockport.
The home team were rescued by Terry Norman for last week’s win at Bury. Terry was again persuaded to help out the short-handed 2015 league champions. Terry was again in the line-up, this time joined by Jack Lush (another shaking of the cobwebs due to rider shortage).
Stockport provided 14 of the 18 race winners, and posted the 7-3 maximum heat score in nine races, on their way to a comfortable win that takes them to second in the league table.
Michael Preston was denied a maximum score by Adam Watson, with Terry Norman denied by Niall Morton. Jake Read had his maximum hopes wrecked when he crashed out in heat 16, after clipping the wheel of Adam Watson.
All the home team returned a double figure score, adding at least one assist also. Sheffield were indebted to Adam Watson and Niall Morton, whose two wins each prevented a massacre scoreline. Ed Morton was a pale shadow of the rider who top scored against Edinburgh last week, only being able to finish ahead of Ben Higham and Louis Wright of the home team.
Laura Watson was the only other Stars rider to beat a home rider, when she finished ahead of Jack Lush in heat 4.
Stockport 108 – Jake Read 16+4, Jack Lush 17+2, Michael Preston 22+1, Louis Wright 16+1, Ben Higham 17+1, Terry Norman 20+3
Sheffield Stars 70 – Niall Morton 17, Laura Watson 7+1, Kielan Burton 5, Adam Watson 18+1, Niamh Morton 4, Luke Morton 8, Ed Morton 10+1, Steven Webber 1.
The Sheffield corner got some joy when Adam (challenger) defeated Jake (holder) in the Northern league match race. Adam went from grid two with Jake on four. Jake fell while chasing Adam, failing to complete the race.
Sheffield faired better in the League Two match, winning by 105-60. A victory that maintains the Stars place as joint leaders, with Astley and Tyldesley. The home team were only able to name four riders, one of whom (Ben Higham) is ineligible for league two.
This also meant Sheffield would receive 25 penalty points. The home team provided 11 of the 15 race winners, with Michael Preston and Louis Wright returning 20 point maximum scores.
Ben Higham was his usual sporting self in this level of racing, winning only one race as he tried to assist Harry Hulme to some points. He was successful in heat one, when the Stockport pair relegated Steven Webber to last place (the only time a Sheffield rider was place last).
Sheffield’s race winners were James Morris (2), Kielan Burton and Niamh Morton
Stockport 60 – Ben Higham 12+1, Harry Hulme 8, Michael Preston 20, Louis Wright 20.
Sheffield Stars 105 – Kielan Burton 15+1, Steven Webber 9+4, Niamh Morton 14+1, James Morris 15+2, Edward Balfour 12+4, Laura Watson 15+1.
Sheffield won the league three match 28-8, with each race finishing with Stars duo of James Morris and Edward Balfour ahead of Harry Hulme for Stockport.
James Morris 16, Edward Balfour 12, Harry Hulme 8.