Teen star Drew Kemp races to a seven-ride maximum for Mildenhall Fen Tigers
- Credit: Archant
Mildenhall Fen Tigers 59 Eastbourne Eagles 31
Drew Kemp roared to a paid 21-point maximum as Mildenhall Fen Tigers strengthened their hopes of National Trophy glory at West Row, against Eastbourne Eagles this afternoon.
Fifteen-year-old Kemp, from Ipswich, produced a stunning show in the Suffolk sunshine, gating to the front, passing round the outside, and inside, against a Sussex side who were expected to give the Fen Tigers a real test and included British U19 runner-up Tom Brennan.
However, the 59-31 victory was no more than the home side deserved for a faultless performance.
“We thought it would be our hardest fixture of the season so far but the lads put on a fantastic performance, led by Drew’s incredible 21-point maximum,” Fen Tigers’ team boss Phil Kirk said.
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“Danny Ayres was back today and it was important he had good day. When he fell off in his first ride we wondered if that was going to be the case.
“But he showed a hell of a lot of character, a real will to win and how much he cares about Mildenhall.”
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However, it was Kemp who stole the show.
He won the opening two races and by heat eight had won four, including finishing second behind partner Ayres in heat seven.
The Eagles simply had no answer, with No.1 Mark Baseby off colour. Only Georgie Wood threatened with a couple of heat wins.
Kirk waxed lyrical about Kemp.
“Well, what can you say about Drew?
“He’s so still on the bike, so in control, he just rides his bike so well.”
After Kemp’s first two heat wins, the rest of the Fen Tigers also set about their business. Ayres fell when in second place in heat four and Ryan Kinsley gated to two impressive heat victories in heats three and five.
No.1 Josh Bailey showed his trade-mark all action style rounding Wood on the line in heat six before the Fen Tigers started to pull away.
When guest Nathan Stoneman and Kemp got the Fen Tigers’ fifth maximum in heat 12, the points were save.
There was still time for Bailey to fly into second place behind Ayres in heat 13, as Wood slipped off trying to chase and Brennan did well to split Bailey and Ayres in the final heat.
Tomorrow night, Mildenhall go to Kent in another National League clash. But will do so without Kemp, who has a GCSE exam at his Claydon High School.
Fen Tigers: J Bailey 10+1, R/R, N Stoneman 6+2, R Kinsley 7+1, D Ayres 11+1, D Kemp 20+1, M Marson 5+1.
Eagles: M Baseby 4, R/R, T Brennan 8, C Powell 4+2, G Wood 8, J Edwards 3+1, C Brooks 4+1