MATCH REPORT: Coventry secure first win

An excellent day for Cycle Speedway at East park Wolves started with a sad moment yesterday. A minute silence for the late Joe Guy, a terrific young rider who started his  cycling racing career at East Park and later at Wolverhampton Wheelers. He was tragically killed in a road accident while on a training ride.

The Division One match was refereed by Rob Barnett, on a warm Sunday afternoon, which became very heated indeed. Coventry visited with a strong team, captained by one of the best in the game, Myke Grimes. He received strong support throughout the team order, shown by double figure return scores from all of their top six riders, who all won at least one race.

The match started with a 7-3 to Coventry, and was followed by a very tight series of racing in the first half. At the interval, the sides had had 4 exclusions each, and a score line of East Park 38 – 46 Coventry.

PHOTOS: East v Coventry by Andy Whitehouse (See more HERE)

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Two more drawn heats then opened up the second half before the main talking point, with an exclusion of Jamie Whetton, who was red carded, meaning Coventry started to open up a lead  50-63.

Then came East Park’s best heat of the match, a 6-3 to the home side through the fast starting Jake White and the East Park captain Josh Hill, bringing the scores closer to 56-66. However, the rest of the match went Coventry’s way in the closing heats, which saw the away side pull away giving a final score East Park 76 – 97 Coventry and a first win of the season for the Sabres.

The highest points scorer for the main event came from the East Park side, in the form of young Jake White, who scored 19 points from a possible 20.

Jamie Whetton 5 (Red Card), John Whetton 7, Jamie Ball 13+1, Ben Fergusson 8, Josh Hill 7+1, Jake White 19, Bob Prince 13+1, Nathaniel Pikor 4

Cameron Gill 11+1, Myke Grimes 15+1, Dan Drewett 14+3, Sam Hardie 16+1, Matt Lawrence 12+1, Kyle Barlow 12, Ollie Morris 9+1, Jake Slatter 5+1

The strong Coventry side started the day with a fine white wash of the East Park “Cubs” junior team before the main event, which finished East Park 24 –  56 Coventry.

The second division match, refereed by Bob Prince was over in a flash. East Park had 8 new, or nearly new, riders trying their best for the home side, but it was a great win for Coventry.

Best of the bunch for East Park was captain Ben Fergusson, with one win and a total of 10 points. Coventry’s team, who were far more experienced, had win after win, strength in depth and finished the day off for Coventry in fine style with an emphatic win by 47 – 102. The young East Park side can take heart that Coventry were in their inexperienced shoes just a few seasons ago, so a bright future awaits the ever-growing club.

Report by Val Hill. Photos by Andy Whitehouse.