Joe rockets to third in U-21 final

SILVER Ski Rocket Joe Haines delivered a tremendous third place finish in the British U21 Final at Lakeside on Friday night.He finished in the bronze medal spot behind new champion Lewis Bridger and second-placed Tai Woffinden, the former Rockets rider and title holder.

SILVER Ski Rocket Joe Haines delivered a tremendous third place finish in the British U21 Final at Lakeside on Friday night.

He finished in the bronze medal spot behind new champion Lewis Bridger and second-placed Tai Woffinden, the former Rockets rider and title holder.

Rye House's Robert Mear was also unlucky not to have a shot at the rostrum.

Haines overcame a fall in heat 10 to finish the main programme with two race wins and 10 points. That qualified him for the semi-final run-off.


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The Bolton Wonder was joined there by Mear, who had dropped his only points to Lewis Bridger and Ben Barker, but missed out on a direct seeding to the Grand Final through the latter defeat.

There was more bad luck for the Mearkat in the run-off.

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The 20-year-old from Hatfield lifted on the second lap after hitting a rut.

That one moment cost him a possible place in the title showdown.

Haines took advantage to make the cut, followed through by defending champion Tai Woffinden, who had survived the earlier disaster of grinding to a halt while leading his second race.

The Grand Final was won by Lewis Bridger, who was undefeated throughout the night, with Woffinden taking second place and Haines third.

At just 17, there will be plenty more big night opportunities as well for the rider dubbed the Bolton Wonder and Smokin' Joe.

He was both of those at Lakeside! Mention should also be given to the third Rye House competitor in the field.

Jamie Courtney enjoyed a solid evening, scoring in all his races to finish in 10th place with six points.

Scorers (main 20 heat programme):

Lewis Bridger 15, Ben Barker 13 (both straight to Grand Final), Robert Mear 13, Joe Haines 10, Tai Woffinden 10, Josh Auty 10 (through to Semi-Final), Simon Lambert 9, Kyle Hughes 9, Lee Smart 8, Jamie Courtney 6, Mark Baseby 4, Brendan Johnson 4, Paul Starke 3, Kyle Newman 3, Ben Hopwood 2, Charles Wright 1 (1 ride).

Reserves: Ben Taylor 1 (2 rides), Greg Blair 0 (2 rides).

Semi-Final: Joe Haines, Tai Woffinden, Robert Mear, Josh Auty.

Grand Final: Lewis Bridger, Tai Woffinden, Joe Haines, Ben Barker.

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