Brilliant Halsey claims National League Riders Championship in last-heat decider
- Credit: Archant
Mildenhall Fen Tigers captain Danny Halsey took victory in the National League Riders Championship at Rye House.
After finishing second in his first ride Halsey claimed three straight wins including an all-important heat nine victory against fellow leaders Joe Jacobs and Cradley’s Steve Worrall.
With Jacobs unfortunately stopped in his tracks when leading heat 16, the result of Scunthorpe’s Aaron Mogridge crashing into him on the fourth bend, it was Worrall who stood between Halsey and victory.
Worrall completed his rides in heat 18 with an impressive 13 point total, two points ahead of the Fen Tiger who was still to take his final ride in the last heat of the afternoon.
With the tension mounting the first attempt to run heat 20saw Cradley rider Paul Starke fall on the first bend, his exclusion leaving just three riders in the re-run. With Halsey again leading Max Clegg (Cradley) closed in and tried to squeeze through the inside on the fourth turn but Halsey blocked the Cradley rider’s path, who then spent the remainder of the race gesticulating to the referee, and then pulled away to be the first Fen Tiger to lift the title for 15 years.
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After the meeting a jubilant Halsey said: “I was trying to cover the inside but he (Clegg) somehow nearly got past. We hit twice and I leaned against him a bit. I wasn’t sure what was happening so I didn’t want to celebrate. I’ve been favourite before but this time I was far from it and it took the pressure off. The track suited me as it was slick and I knew if I made the gates I would have a chance.”
Club Chairman Kevin Jolly was pleased to see his Captain win the day -
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“Dan is a fantastic Captain and very popular with everyone at the club, and we are very pleased that today is his day. It was fully deserved as well, although not always the quickest on the track he rode with style, skill and good sense and this is a reward for all the effort he has put into his speedway. Hopefully a big crowd will be at our next home meeting (Sunday 5th October) to see our Captain return home with the trophy”
Joe Jacobs, who beat Worrall in the same heat as Halsey, lost out in the re-run of Heat Sixteen to Morley which forced a third-place run-off between the pair. This time Jacobs gated but was passed by Morley to deny the Fen Tigers two riders on the podium.
NLRC 2014 Result - 1st – Halsey 14, 2nd – Worrall 13, 3rd – Morley 12 (after run-off), 4th – Jacobs 12, 5th – Armstrong 9