MATCH REPORT: Coventry youngsters in brave fight

Coventry Cycle Speedway team returned to first team Midland League division one action after a 6 week break in senior team racing against powerful Birmingham last Sunday afternoon at Perry Barr.

Team manager Lee Marsh faced selection headaches, with leading first choice riders Tom Sensicall, Dave Frith and Dan Drewett all missing. Veteran Joe McLaughlin was also rested from the first team, having raced at Newport the day before.

Marsh plugged the gaps by calling up Coventry`s new wave of emerging youngsters, with Jake Slatter, Charlie Barnett, Josh Marsh and first team debutant Spencer Sawbridge all getting a chance to shine against the championship chasing home side.

The city whiz kids responded in fine fashion by putting up a determined rear-guard action against vastly older and more experienced home riders to keep the score to a highly respectable 96-83 reverse.

With heat leaders Myke Grimes, Bobby McMillan and Dominik Rycharski all in electric form in the early stages, Coventry made a bright start and briefly led after the opening exchanges.

Birmingham fought back, and with the home side packed with top nationally ranked senior riders, they soon asserted control and by the half way mark, heat 9, they led by 50-30.

Coventry big guns Grimes, McMillan and Rycharski all won heats in the second period, with the Hearsall Common men bravely fighting back. They actually won the second half of the match and shared the final four heats.

Grimes warmed up for his assault on the upcoming World Championship finals by dropping just a single point against potent opposition. McMillan returned 17 hard earned points in typical robust style and Rycharski blossomed in the second half.

Teenage starlet Mason Phillips survived un-injured after three spectacular crashes, underlying Coventry`s commitment. Their other youngsters battled well and will have greatly learnt from their first team experience.

Coventry point scorers:

Myke Grimes 19, Bobby McMillan 17, Dominik Rycharski 15, Mason Phillips 10, Charlie Barnett 7, Jake Slatter 6, Josh Marsh 5 and Spencer Sawbridge 4.

Coventry also went down 69-61 to Birmingham in the supporting Midland League division 2 match – again against much more experienced opponents. Jake Slatter continued his recent upsurge in form by top scoring for Coventry.

Coventry point scorers:

Jake Slatter 11, Ollie Morris 10, Charlie Barnett 10, Sammi Marsh 10, Shaun Reynolds 9, Spencer sawbridge 8 and Joe McLaughlin 5.

Birmingham completed a hat trick of wins on the day by also accounting for Coventry 45-35 in the Midland Junior League. Jimmy Wassall raced unbeaten by an opponent for Coventry.

Coventry point scorers:

Jimmy Wassall 15, Bailie Phillips 8, Wyatt Jacobs 4 Jack Reynolds 3, Sam Slatter 3 and Ronnie Wassall 2.

Myke Grimes is named in the England team in tomorrow’s (11th July) Home International at Ipswich. His Coventry teammate, and protégé, Mason Phillips in named in the England junior team for the Home Junior International, also at Ipswich.

Brandon Bees are in Midland league division 2 action this Tuesday (14th July) at Birmingham. The Bees will be hoping to record their fourth successive victory.

Coventry stage a major junior individual meeting this Friday (17th July) at Hearsall Common, 7.30pm start, with the 2015 presentation of the annual BMS Ltd sponsored `Junior Classic`.

Sixteen top junior riders will be on show from all the Midland clubs, including Ollie Morris, Sammi Marsh and Spencer Sawbridge. There shall be a barbeque running throughout the meeting for parents, officials and fans.

The club, ever keen to encourage more juniors, will also run the supporting BMS Ltd `Mini Classic`, with newcomers Mason Bowen, Nathan Read, Wyatt Jacobs, Ethan Read, Liam Jones, James Morris, Sam Slatter, Finley Jouson, Alex Jones and Jude Wilcockson all set to race in their first individual meeting.

For more information on Brandon Bees Cycle Speedway club, please ring: 07400 993999.

For more information on Coventry Cycle Speedway Club, including on how to get involved, you can visit or follow the club on Twitter using @CoventryCSC.