MATCH REPORT: Midland League Individual Championships return to success

Birmingham hosted the Midland League Individual Championships on Saturday. Despite it being a miserable, windy and cold day, 66 riders turned out to race for their competitions.
The track had suffered several days of heavy rain but held up well despite it riding very heavy and challenging on the legs!

First up were the U12s, with 17 riders entered. Heat 2 proved to be the pivotal heat as Connor Steel passed Kyle Wells after 2 hard fought laps with a sweeping burst of speed around the outside to take the win, both riders went unbeaten after that.

It required a run off for 3rd place with two Birmingham riders facing off. It was Bekah Humphries who made the gate on Charlie Buet Gannon to take the win. Ben Heagren impressed and just missed out on the rostrum on 13 points. Jamie Breen started with a win to finish on 17 points whilst Deraj Chawla scored 8.

1st Connor Steel (Birmingham)
2nd Kyle Wells (Leicester)
3rd Rebekah Humphries (Birmingham)

In the U15s, 22 riders turned out, including some the U12 riders. Two riders dominated to score maximum points, Coventry’s Ben Wells and Leicester rider Bartosz Pelaczyk. It required a run off to decide the title. Wells exploded out the gate and never looked back.

It took another run off to decide 3rd place. Joshua Whetton defeating Tom Savage and Lee Gregory of Coventry. Ryan Winwood took a victory on his way to 12 points whilst Vinaj Chawla scored 8 points.

1st. Ben Wells (coventry)
2nd. Bartosz Pelaczyk (Leicester)
3rd. Josh Whetton (Wednesfield)

9 women entered for their competition. Leicester’s Lizzy Rigley dominated unbeaten whilst the Leicester domination was split with with a Wednesfield youngster joining them on the rostrum. Rebekah Humphries needed to win her final heat to force a place on the rostrum but had had to settle for 2nd and 4th overall.

1st. Elizabeth New’fb Rigley (Leicester )
2nd. Chloe Whitehead (Leicester)
3rd. Georgia Burt (Wednesfield)

9 riders took part in the junior (U18) competition. One man ended unbeaten with an explosion of power and speed, and that was Leicester Polish youngster Damien Pelaczyk who has a huge career ahead of him. Monarch youngster Ewan Hancox had costly slips at the start but still powered to 14 points and a rostrum place.

1st. Damien Pelaczyk (Leicester)
2nd. Hayden Rowley (Wednesfield)
3rd. Ewan Hancox (Birmingham)

With some late withdrawals the Veterans category was down to 8 riders. No surprise that current veterans champion Craig Marchant took the glory on the day with a maximum , whilst Birmingham’s own Mark Winwood taking 3rd. Paul Timms and Steve Hodgkinson both scored 9 points.

1st. Craig Marchant (Leicester)
2nd. Norman Venson (Leicester)
3rd. Mark Winwood (Birmingham)

The crowning glory of the day was the final event with the Open event. Whilst much fancied Paul Heard (movement at start) and Chris Timms (exclusion and withdrawal) dropped points. It was British champion, Myke Grimes, who was left unchallenged with an masterclass of gating and passing to romp to the title in style.

There was a run off for 2nd between Chris Jewkes and Mike Baldock, the Leicester rider taking a good defensive opening lap to take 2nd overall.

1st. Myke Grimes (Coventry)
2nd. Mike Baldock (Leicester)
3rd. Chris Jewkes (Wednesfield )

All at the Birmingham club would like to thank those who gave help on the day also. So a big thanks to Tracey Barnett and Jess Barnett for signing riders in, Albert Bentley and Bob Prince for referreeing, Lee Marsh for announcing and to Ross Mee for rider draws and pits marshaling.