MATCH REPORT: Coventry prevail against determined Leicester

Coventry Devlins Newsagents Cycle Speedway club prevailed, just, in a closely fought encounter at Hearsall Common on Sunday afternoon as they claimed two further Midland League points.

Led by the powerhouse Australian signing Bobby McMillan, Coventry quickly opened up a 10 point lead with three 7-3’s in the opening four heats – only ex World Cycle Speedway Champion Dave Hemsley could take the flag for the visitors in the early stages.


Mason Phillips (black helmet) and Bobby McMillan (blue helmet) team up for an opening heat 7-3. Picture by Paul Devine.

A crucial win for Craig Marchant in heat 8 ensured Leicester were still in contention at the half way stage as they trailed Coventry by just eight points.

Heat 11 proved to be a turning point in the meeting as Hemsley & Venson provided Leicester with a 7-3 to bring the Monarchs within four points of the home side. Myke Grimes ran a last as he was forcefully taken wide to the fence by Hemsley, who proved no slouch on his racing comeback.

Dave Hemsley looked quick on his comeback. Picture by Paul Devine.

Dave Hemsley looked quick on his comeback. Picture by Paul Devine.

Coventry again turned to Bobby McMillan for crucial support as himself and Mason Phillips teamed up for a second 7-3 to provide Coventry with some breathing room. An impressive second place from Midland League Div 1 debut man Matt Hambridge in the following race steadied Coventry’s gradual recovery.

Four shared heats in the concluding five races ensured Coventry secured victory with Bobby McMillan completing his paid maximum.

A special mention must go to Steve Ingram who made only his third appearance on a Cycle Speedway bike. Ingram, a road racer by trade, has proved himself to be a quick learner in the sport and managed 5 points from his three rides, including an impressive second place in his opening ride.

Midland League Division 2

Coventry completed the double in the Midland League Division 2 fixture as they romped to a 60-50 victory.

Leicester, using three riders from the Division 1 meeting, were docked 15 points prior to the meeting – 5 for each rider – though, again, put up a strong fight to their Midland rivals. Damien Pelalyck from Leicester scored an unbeaten 20 point maximum and received strong support from Liam Doughty.

Coventry were supported by promising youngster Jake Slatter, who defied a horrific tumble in his fourth ride to earn himself a respectable double figure return. Spencer Sawbridge also rode well, though his partner for the majority of the meeting, Shaun Reynolds struggled and was excluded from one of his rides for touching the tapes.

Ollie Morris and Charlie Barnett proved strong assets to the Coventry side also as the Devlins Newsagents closed out victory with two heats remaining.