MATCH REPORT: Sheffield too hot to handle for Bury

Report by Rob Mawhood

Sheffield were just like the weather, too hot to handle, as they defeated Bury 107-71 in this North and Scotland Division One top of the table clash at the Graves track. Both teams went into the match unbeaten, though Bury were severely weakened due to missing riders.

Sheffield have a strong squad for 2024, still able to field a winning line up despite Ed Morton (holiday), Aiden Owen (injury) and Niall Morton (referee duties) not in the match day team.

Bury’s newest England International, Tom Dunphy, looked like springing an upset win in heat one as he led Pawel Idziorek for three laps. Pawel made a good pass to draw the race. Sheffield then raced to two maximum heat wins. Bury took a 6-2 win in heat 4. Dunphy speeding away for a three point race win (after a one point deduction for a tapes infringement). With Dariusz Pilas excluded for the Stars after pedalling off the track as he attempted to pass Eryk Motala on the outside down the back straight. Sheffield had the race winner in the next three heats (Kyle Holland, Wil Banyard and Leon Wild). A cracking heat 8 saw all four riders lead at one stage, Bury taking a 7-3 from Dunphy and Mike Baldock, reducing the Comets deficit to 36-42 as the teams entered the half term interval.

Sheffield really turned up the heat in the second half, recording eight maximum 7-3’s over the final ten races. The two races not won by 7-3 saw Baldock/Tom Dunphy get their second maximum in heat 11 and Baldock got a second place in heat 15 after passing Kielan Burton.

Eight of Sheffield’s ten riders recorded a race win, with Idziorek, Wild and Banyard unbeaten. Pilas and Jack Brownell were involved in 7-3 race wins to add assisted wins.

Bury’s second team riders battled admiringly but found the Stars too strong.

Sheffield (107) – Pawel Idziorek 18+2, Kieran Hale 7, Jack Brownell 7+1, Leon Wild 17+3, Kyle Holland 12+1, Dariusz Pilas 9+3, Wil Banyard 8, Kielan Burton 13+1, Lizzie Rigley 7, Laura Watson 9.

Bury (71) – Mike Baldock 16+3, Tom Dunphy 18, Mark Radford 9, Eryk Motala 12+2, Bobby Dunphy 7, Owen Simcock 9.

Referee – Niall Morton

Team photo of Sheffield with shirt sponsor Pete Whitehead,  Worksop Town FC chairman. Taken by Nicola Banyard. 

Sheffield maintained their unbeaten start to the North and Scotland League Division Two season with a 117-48 victory over a Bury team who never gave up their efforts.

Bury had to start the match giving up 25 points for having Mike Baldock in the line up and would also see any points scored by guest rider Charlie Mawhood deducted from their final total.

Sheffield started the match with four maximum 7-3 race wins, Oliver Banyard recording two race victories on his way to a 20 point maximum score. Tom Dunphy and Mike Baldock ensured Sheffield would only manage four more maximum wins over the next eleven races. Baldock having the Comets only race wins. Sheffield were made to work hard for the victory with all six Stars having to make passes to get the better of their Bury counterparts. Lizzie Rigley’s pass on Tom Dunphy in heat 7 being a particular highlight. Laura Watson, returned from a broken finger injury, had three race wins, as did Kieran Hale. All the Stars hitting a double figure score.


Sheffield (117 – 98+25) – Kieran Hale 16+2, Jack Brownell 11+3, Lizzie Rigley 14+2, Laura Watson 17+1, Wil Banyard 14+2, Oliver Banyard 20.

Bury Comets (48 – 56-8) – Mark Radford 9, Bobby Dunphy 7, Tom Dunphy 8+2, Owen Simcock 9, Mike Baldock 15+1, Charlie Mawhood 8.

Referee – Niall Morton.

The Division Three match saw Oliver Banyard defeat Bobby Dunphy (in what would be his first of three matches) in four races as Sheffield were victors by 16-12.