MATCH REPORT: Brandon edge win over Birmingham

Five man Birmingham Monarchs came agonisingly close to pulling off a win at newly reformed Brandon last night in a Midland League Division 2 fixture clash.

Kyle Roberts from Coventry was allowed to fill the vacant number 6 spot for Birmingham, but his points didn’t count. The Monarchs made the first advantage in heat 3 after two drawn heats with a race win by Nathan Groves.

Hodgkinson won the next advantage in the fifth to give Birmingham a two point advantage and whilst the next two went the way of the Birmingham side, the Bees pulled back a big 7-3 of their own, going into the interval with the scores 36-37. A one point advantage the Monarchs.

A reckless move from Bees Tom Sensicall earned him a rightful exclusion in the ninth gifting the Monarchs a 7-2. Roberts earned two iffy tape exclusions late on in the meeting, meaning Emily Pitt had to race one of her heats as the sole Birmingham representative. The Bees had wrapped up proceedings before Groves finished his meeting in the final race unbeaten.

Given that Birmingham lead the majority of the meeting, they can take plenty of positives from the match. Paul Timms after a first race last place, pulled off four excellent wins and both Hancox and Pitt rode much better than their scores suggested. Pitt in particular going shoulder to shoulder with much more experienced riders, whilst Hancox who crashed in all his previous outings last year, rode the track much more intelligently.

The meeting also saw the welcome return to action of former Coventry riders Ashley Pointer and Liam Mcguire. It was Pointer’s first outing since the 2011 resurgence of the Coventry club, having raced in the early to mid-noughties.

BRANDON BEES 71 – Mason Phillips 13+2, Liam Mcguire 3 (3), Danny Drewett 12+1, Tom Sensicall 12, Charlie Barnett 12+2, Dave Frith 15+2, Ashley Pointer 4+1 (2).

BIRMINGHAM MONARCHS 66 (75-9) – Steve Hodgkinson 12, Emily Pitt 7+1, Ewan Hancox 11, Paul Timms 17, Nathan Groves 19+1, Kyle Mark Roberts 9+1.