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BULLDOZED

Timperley smash Bandits

In his own words Timperley promoter Garry Robinson proclaimed it to be a ‘perfect’ pre-season for his club. However will the in-form Titans live up to the growing expectations around the Robinson Arena that their first competition wins in four years are just around the corner? So far so good, the records tumbled at Bullbridge for the Titans, who beat their hosts 37-53, which not only equalled their biggest ever away league win—and was their best in the top flight—but was also the largest margin of victory by any club on the road in division one at this stage of the season since SL17. Setting the high mark that year were Lyme Bay, who would go on to top the final division one standings by a mammoth 15 point margin! Of course Robinson will be delighted just to get that second league title under his belt, the first now six years ago, the meeting at Bullbridge suggests it’s theirs to lose. Five time GP winner and a veteran of 32, Tobias Schneider top scored in the victory with 13+1, the German racing to four of the ten heat wins recorded by the visitors. The fourth of which was returned in a heat 15 5-1 ahead of Trevor Putnam (12+1), a rider who is looking to re-ignite a career that has floundered since riding in the GP’s back in SL27. It was however a 5-1 in the race earlier which saw Timperley confirm their fourth victory at the circuit in their last five league appearances there, the maximum from WU21 title hopefuls David Samudio (7) and Juhani Makinen (9+2) also ensuring that the club would top the division one standings at this early stage of the season. Will they be still there at the end?

TODAY: Shorts

Stone Cross opened their first season in the top flight in four years with back-to-back trips to Nottingham. The Red Knights had also been promoted to division one at the end of SL30, but unlike their visitors to the Greyhound Stadium they were making their debut in the top flight, and it was a one to forget. Their maiden league meeting at this level ended in a 42-48 defeat, with the Crusaders benefiting from the hosts lack of out-and-out heat leaders late on, their own top three taking 5-1’s in heats 13 and 15 to earn the two league points in what had been a tightly contested meeting. Dusan Hobler (15) won both those races to secure his own maximum, the first of three in the week, the third returned in an impressive home 50-40 victory over defending champions Eastbourne, a win which sees them sit just behind Timperley on points difference in the league standings. In-between another trip to Nottingham for Stuart Smith’s side, this time in the Division One Cup. Despite taking just four race wins—all of which were recorded by 19 year old reserve Zarek Wieczorek (15+1)—the Red Knights managed to eke out a 46-44 victory on this occasion, as the visitors converting just three of their 11 race victories into heat advantages.

 

Disappointment though for Nottingham in another of the Club competitions as they suffered an early exit in the Pairs. Their representatives finished just fifth of seven despite home advantage in the qualifier, as Greenhill’s Luca Romano (17) and Colin Bradford (10) dominated the tie. They picked up heat advantages against all six of their opponents in an impressive display, and after dropping just three points will be one of the favourites to reach their first final in the competition in next weeks second round. It was a poor showing all-round from the four hosts this week, with the quartet all failing to make the next stage, Burrett Road especially disappointing, they finishing last with 12 points in a tie Stone Cross won with 26! More success from the top flight clubs at Bournemouth and Wednesfield, where Birkenhead (23) and Eastbourne (27) were the winners respectively. Nottingham though weren’t the only side from division one to struggle in this format, with both Swinton (18) and Bullbridge (15) missing out on round two, second tier Auckland (22) and Purton (21) from division three progressing at the duos expense.

 

A surprise at Dundee where the hosts’ newly crowned BU19 Champion James MacLean (14) was beaten by Christopher Ellis (15) to the British U21 semi-final win. 20 year old Ellis, who has risen through the ranks at Swinton to cement a place at second string, scored a maximum to claim his second career WSO meeting win. The second of the semi-final ties at Lakeside was won by SL29 WU19 Champion Jamie Brewer (13), who joined Nottingham from Sawley for £400,000 in SL30.

 

As the only side to win a meeting away from home in the lower tiers it’s Bolsover who sit proudly top of division two. Their road-trip victory was achieved on their first ever visit to Sawley, the recently relegated Grenadiers unable to prevent a 44-46 loss despite their young Hungarian Ozor Erdos scoring ten at reserve. All of the Crusaders top five managed at least one race win, the pick of the quintet, second string Jonathan Mackler (8)

 

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