WEEKEND PREVIEW: KO Cup Quarter Finals and BYJL National Round 2

This weekend sees the return of the British Team Knock-Out Cup competition, as we reach the Quarter Final stage. First, on Saturday it’s the second national round of the British Youth and Junior League, which takes place at in the South East region, at Ipswich Cycle Speedway.

BYJL National Round 2 – Ipswich, South East Region

The British Youth and Junior League rocks into Suffolk for another busy day of thrills and spills, with the best of British juniors doing battle in the popular individual series. Hull provided some great action a few weeks ago with wins for John White in the under 8s, Charlie Wade in the under 10s, Lewis Brinkoff in the under 12s, Haydn Rowley in the under 14s, Brandon Whetton in the Under 16s and Lauren Hookway in the Girls category. Brinkoff, Rowley and Whetton have all won their first 5 rounds in their respective categories, which is an impressive feat – they all lead on 125 points. Equally impressive is Charlie Wade, who also has a 100% record starting from round two, with only missing the first Northern League round seemingly keeping the Hull rider off the top of the table. It’s certainly very competitive in all categories, Lily Gedge currently leads the girls on 120 points, only missing out on a 100% score to Lauren Hookway, in the first national round, last time out. Oliver Wright leads the Under 10s, after his 100% record ended with a 4th placed finish at Hull. John White leads the way in the Under 8s, dropping his only points with a second place in round one of his regional round in the Northern League.

The current standings for the British Youth and Junior League can be found by clicking HERE.

British Team Knock-Out Cup – Quarter Finals

Ipswich v Stockport
This could easily be the tie of the round. Both sides are unbeaten (Ipswich Whirlwinds) in their respective leagues this year, the bad news for Stockport is that Ipswich will no doubt have their full Elite League side out in force, currently sitting second in the table in the highest tier of British Cycle Speedway. However, Stockport’s Jack and Mat Lush, Ben Higham, Jake Read and former British Champion Terry Norman are perfectly capable of filling the boots for any Elite League side, so they should be a good match for their Suffolk opponents. We await the result with interest!

Leicester v Wednesfield
“Steady”, would be how to describe these two team’s Midland League campaigns this year. Leicester have probably the best women and girls membership in the country, maybe even the world! Rumour has it, they will be playing a big part in this fixture on Sunday. The Monarch’s first team isn’t as strong as it was and is very veteran heavy these days, something that does them well in the Veterans Club Championship. This weekend, the Monarchs have holidays and other issues to contend with. If the rumours are true, we could see an all female line up to Leicester’s side, which could be a first for a Cycle Speedway first team.

Poole v Bury
Bury cruised to victory against a weakened Coventry side in round one, Ben Scranage and Chris Parish lead the way for the Northern side, with strong back up from their team from 1-8. They will need to take the same side down to Harbourside Park to progress to the semi finals/finals day at Exeter in September. Poole’s faith in their younger riders in the Elite League certainly paid off against Exeter in the last round. Dean Hook, Arron Morgan and Will Bristowe and Ben Donohue all scored well against their South and South Wales rivals. This match should be a great one for the spectators.

Swindon v Hull
Can Swindon get a team together is the question for this one? It’s at home, so the answer will hopefully be yes. Both sides had a bye in round one. The Wiltshire side have not been able to get a 1-8 in the last month or so, a default in the KO Cup would mean that Hull go through to the Semi Finals/Finals day at Exeter without having to turn a wheel. That’s certainly not the way Andy Angell and his team would like to progress, so hopefully the Oasis Leisure centre track will see some action on Sunday.

South and South Wales League

Horspath v Hellingly
Zac Payne’s heroic 7 rides last weekend restored a bit of pride for the depleted Oxford side, who could only field 6 riders at home as they lost to Newport. If they are suffering from holiday issues (Mark Boaler still being one potential absentee), Hellingly could get a couple of points on the board, as they eye a move up the table and get off the bottom.

If you’re racing this weekend, enjoy it. Likewise, if you’re reading this from a tropical climate whilst on holiday, have a Pina Colada for the 33/18 News team!