MATCH REPORT: A&T back in business

Astley & Tyldesley bounced back to winning ways in the Northern League Division 1, after beating Northumbria Vikings 88-80, in a very sporting encounter at Gin Pit on Sunday.

A&T took heat wins in three of the opening five races to move into a 29-20 lead, but the visitors hit back in heat 6 when Kirkup and Redshaw came through on the last bend to take a 7-3 heat win over Mulvey/ Grantham.

A&T hit back with a Pollitt/ Paine 6-4 heat win over Keith/ Oldham to move into a 7 points lead. Most unusually, all four riders were excluded from heat 9 for exceeding the time allowance. A&T kept their noses in front during the second half and sealed the points with a Hughes/ Pollitt 7-3 heat win over Kirkup/ Oldham in heat 17, before the visitors took a consolation 7-3 win in the last heat over A&T’s reserve riders.

Reece Pollitt raced unbeaten for A&T and recorded the fastest time of the day, 42.92 secs in heat 7. The others put in a solid team effort, to hold a lead throughout the match from heat 2 until the end. For Northumbria, Jason Keith was excellent, losing only to Pollitt in heat 7, with Michael Parr dropping his two points to Pollitt also.

A&T 88
Reece Pollitt 19 (1), Danny Hughes 16 (1), Paul Graham 12 (2), Mark Grantham 10 (1), Gareth Paine 10, Max Evans 9 (3), Mark Mulvey 9, Charlie Burgess 3.

Northumbria 80
Jason Keith 19, Michael Parr 17 (1), Dan Redshaw 15, Dan Wharrier 10 (2), Terry Kirkup 7 (1), Keith Oldham 6, Jim Graham 5, Andy Knowles 1.

Referee – Mike Hack.

The Division 2 match was closely fought throughout. The scores were level at the end of heat 6, before the visitors took two successive 6-4 heat wins, to take a lead that they never relinquished, to win 77-73. Max Evans, Mark Grantham and Gareth Paine all won races for A&T, but the team just fell short. Northumbria’s Dan Wharrier lost only to Evans in heat 11, with solid support throughout.

A&T 73
Max Evans 16 (1), Mark Grantham 15 (1), Gareth Paine 14 (2), Jon Quarmby 13, John White 9, Joe Quarmby 6 (1), Jack Murray dnr, Emily Burgess dnr.

Northumbria 77
Dan Wharrier 19, Dan Redshaw 16, Andy Knowles 13, Dan Thompson 11 (2), Keith Oldham 8, Paul Thompson 6, Jim Graham 4.

Referee – Mike Hack.

Northumbria failed to field a rider in the Division 3 match, so A&T rode to a whitewash 76-0 win, to maintain their position at the top of the table. There were some really competitive races between Joe Quarmby, Emily Burgess and John White.

A&T 76
Joe Quarmby 15, Emily Burgess 14, John White 13, Charlie Burgess 12, Jack Murray 10, Lucy Grantham 6, Max Quarmby 6.

Referee – Catherine White

For more information on cycle speedway, ladies road rides and off road leisure rides, visit the Astley & Tyldesley Cycling Club’s website at

Cover photo shows Northumbria’s Dan Wharrier (left) battling for the lead with A&T’s Danny Hughes (right) in the Division 1 match, just before Michael Parr came through to take the race win. Photo courtesy of Linda Kirkland.