MATCH REPORT: Frank Knight/Dave Shoat Memorial Trophy

Report by Rob Mawhood, Photos by Caroline Burton/Clive Wren

Sheffield opened their 2024 home season with fifth staging of the Frank Knight/Dave Shoat memorial trophy.
It was a tremendous day for Kyle Holland (Sheffield’s 2023 rider of the year) as he won both cups, the £50 first place prize and a share in the £25 for fastest two lap time trial.
The experimental format had 24 riders competing. First up was the 2 lap time trials, which would come into play later in the meeting. Kyle and Wil Banyard tied for the best time, their 18.79 the quickest around the Cookson bowl this season. It was a great way for the riders to start the day. John White (A and T), Ed Morton and Pawel Idziorek were also sub 19 seconds.
Ben Moulds track record (18.28) is safe for the time being.
The riders then competed in three groups of eight, with points going to decide grid positions for the knock out stages.
Group A saw the only unbeaten rider of the 24, Ed Morton impressed with a 16 point maximum. Holland, Reece Pollitt and Kayden Davidson were also race winners.
Race winners were spread over six riders in Group B. Chris Timms (the 2023 winner) topped the scores with two wins. Niall Morton had two wins also with Kris Ramsden, Jake Slight, Dariusz Pilas and Leon Wild (Sheffield’s returning sensation) all getting at least one win.
Group C saw just four riders gaining race wins. Pawel Idziorek had three (it would have been a maximum but for an unfortunate fall while leading his third race, the hard racing surface catching him out). The hard and fast track caught out quite a few riders, at least six riders falling while they were leading a race. John White and Lewis Foxley managed double race wins, with Mike Baldock the other race winner.

Scores (team Sheffield unless mentioned)

Group A
Ed Morton 16, Kyle Holland 14, Kayden Davidson (Fife) 12, Reece Pollitt (Bury) 11, Tom Dunphy (Bury) 8, Lizzie Rigley 7, Frank White (A and T) 6, Jack Brownell 5.

Group B
Chris Timms (Birmingham) 14, Niall Morton 12, Dariusz Pilas 12, Kris Ramsden (Bury) 11, Jake Slight (Fife) 10, Leon Wild 8, Kieran Hale 7, Laura Watson 5.

Group C
John White (A and T) 14, Pawel Idziorek 13, Lewis Foxley (Hull) 12, Mike Baldock (Bury) 12, Kielan Burton 9, Wil Banyard 8, Niah Lyon (Hull) 6, Dougie Morgan (Fife) 6.

The first knock out stages had the riders with the best scores starting from the inside grids, all six races won by the rider from grid one. Going through were Ed Morton, Holland, John White, Timms, Idziorek and Pilas. Also going into the quarter finals were the six second placed riders and the four fastest third place riders. Noah Lyon caused a big upset with a brilliant ride in the fourth knock out race as he passed both Niall Morton and Wild after exiting the last bend to take second place. Morton had ridden tactically to keep Wild behind him, so much so that he missed out on a third place qualification by 0.05 seconds.

The quarter finals saw Ed Morton, John White and Timms win from grid one. Pilas won the second quarter final after out gating Holland. Idziorek, Ramsden and Pollitt completed the semi final line up.
The first semi final saw Timms win from John White, Idziorek and Pollitt.
Ed Morton sped from grid two for his seventh race win of the day. With the younger legs of Holland getting the better of Pilas (who had started from grid one) and Ramsden.

The final four line up had the grid positions determined by the 2 lap time trials. So it was Holland of one, White on two, Morton on three and Timms from the outside. Holland (who is not known for his starting prowess) sped from grid one and the race was over as a contest on the exit of turn one as White fell and hampered Morton, though Timms had made a good move to come put of the corner in second place.
It was hard for Morton, who lost for the only time in the match, but was much deserved for Holland (who had also had six races in the earlier Go Ride GP).
The top four picking up prize money from meeting sponsors Alligator Heating and Cooling Ltd.

Referee – Rob Mawhood

Twenty Four Sheffield riders were joined by Astley’s White brothers for the opening Go Ride round of 2024. The ladder format produced lots of thrilling races, with plenty of passing on the wide track. There was even four riders in the line up who were last together with the 1984 Parkwood Aces team. Adrian Brownell, Paul Holmes, Dave Robinson and Rob Mawhood all enjoyed the occasion.
Winners were
Under 8 – Lucas Mawhood
Under 10 – No entries
Under 13 – Frank White
Women – Laura Watson
Vets (35+) – Wil Banyard
Open – John White.