BAD NIGHT AT THE OFFICE
Monday April 24, 2017
The BMR Rockets suffered a 55-37 defeat at defending champions Wolverhampton in their opening away fixture in the SGB Premiership, as their opponents gained a fair measure of revenge for their own reverse in Hoddesdon at the start of the month.

Successive home 5-1s left the Rockets chasing the match from the off, and although former Wolf Ricky Wells steadied the ship by winning out in his battle with Jacob Thorssell in Heat 3 and Scott Nicholls following suit in the next race, Rye found themselves 24-12 behind as early as Heat 6.

Wells featured heavily again in Heat 7 – this time when nominated for double points – as he kept plenty of early pressure on eventual winner Sam Masters, as the home side restricted Rye to an off-track 5-3 from that TR outing, before Ellis Perks and Stuart Robson gave the Hertfordshire side sudden hope with a dramatic 5-1 over Kyle Howarth in the next race.

28-22 was as close as it got, however, as the Monmore men powered to three maximum advantages and two 4-2s from the remaining races. Chris Harris and Stuart Robson provided the main visiting highlights in that “second half”, with “Bomber” taking Heat 12 when pitted against Rory Schlein and “Robbo” coming up trumps in the finale when outpacing Sam Masters.

Robson topped the Rockets’ pile overall with 10+1, with Harris and Wells both paid for 8 behind him. It proved a nightmare occasion, however, for captain Edward Kennett who failed to trouble the scorers. As a relatively subdued Rye House Team Manager Peter Schroeck explained afterwards: “Eddie was suffering with a bad migraine, and in combination with being seriously delayed in traffic getting here, it really threw him out. He just wasn’t his usual self tonight. I know that he will be absolutely determined to bounce back as quickly as possible, to put this one behind him.

“It also didn’t help that Bomber had problems with his bike, which he managed to sort in the end, which is when his scores picked up. Ricky was disappointed not to get more on his return to his former stamping ground, which shows what he was aiming for, but the track was prepared totally slick and it took us a little while to get our set-ups right.

“Of the positives, the big ones were Robbo and Ellis, who picked up another race win.

“Tonight has proven to be a bit of a reality check, and a reminder of just how tough this league is. It is better, though, to have a result like this now than at the other end of the season. We have plenty of time to re-group, learn and build from it.

“If we can keep performing like we have done in general, we’ll be alright. It’s a LONG season.

“Right now, it’s about dusting ourselves down, getting ready for (Bank Holiday) Monday against Leicester, and showing that we can be heroes again.”

BMR Rockets:
Stuart Robson 10+1, Ricky Wells 8 (inc 4 as a TR), Chris Harris 7+1, Scott Nicholls 7, Ellis Perks 4, Max Clegg 1, Edward Kennett 0.

Wolverhampton:
Sam Masters 13, Freddie Lindgren 11+1 (max), Rory Schlein 8, Kyle Howarth 7+3, Jacob Thorssell 7, Mark Riss 5+2, Nathan Greaves 4+1.

Match Points: Wolverhampton 3 Rye House 0

BRITISH SEMI-FINAL DRAW

The BMR Rockets will have no less than five representatives in this season’s British Championship, with all five competing in the second Semi-Final at Sheffield.

7-time champion Scott Nicholls, 3-time winner Chris Harris, Edward Kennett, Stuart Robson and Rob Branford will all be targeting a place in the Final which will take place at Belle Vue’s National Speedway Stadium in Manchester on Monday, June 19th.

The full draw, in riding order, is as follows:

Newcastle (Sunday, April 30th):

1. Jason Garrity, 2. Joe Jacobs, 3. Rory Schlein, 4. Ashley Morris, 5. James Sarjeant, 6. Robert Lambert, 7. Steve Worrall, 8. Danny King, 9. Richard Lawson, 10. Ben Barker, 11. Lewis Rose, 12. Kyle Newman, 13. Richie Worrall, 14. Steve Boxall, 15. Liam Carr, 16. Paul Starke

Sheffield (Thursday, May 4th):

1. Lewis Bridger, 2. Josh Auty, 3. Edward Kennett, 4. Carl Wilkinson, 5. Chris Harris, 6. Adam Roynon, 7. Scott Nicholls, 8. Stuart Robson, 9. Lewis Kerr,
10. Craig Cook, 11. Stefan Nielsen, 12. Adam Ellis, 13. Simon Lambert, 14. Robert Branford, 15. Josh Bates, 16. Kyle Howarth

Reserve 1: Max Clegg
Reserve 2: Dan Bewley
Reserve 3: Ben Morley
Reserve 4: Tom Perry

Picture: STEVE FEENEY