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Kings of Anglia Issue 10 Magazine Offer

Huge drama in last-heat deciders as Eastern Region cycle speedway stars pip Midlands...TWICE!

PUBLISHED: 10:07 24 July 2018 | UPDATED: 10:07 24 July 2018

The SE & E Junior team mob Tyler and Lewis Brinkhoff after their match-winning final heat at Coventry Photo: PHIL CLARKE

The SE & E Junior team mob Tyler and Lewis Brinkhoff after their match-winning final heat at Coventry Photo: PHIL CLARKE

Archant

The Eastern region cycle speedway squads each put one hand on the Battle of Britain Junior and Senior trophies on Sunday at Coventry after two incredible meetings, writes Phil Clarke.

The South East & East duo Ashley Hill, left, and Josh Brooke lead Nathan Groves and Chris Timms Photo: PHIL CLARKEThe South East & East duo Ashley Hill, left, and Josh Brooke lead Nathan Groves and Chris Timms Photo: PHIL CLARKE

Both matches against the Midlands went to last heat deciders and both meetings ended with one-point victories for the East and South East side, taking both Eastern squads to four wins out of four.

The Seniors have all but assured they will retain their 2017 title, while the Juniors have the advantage but still face a title challenge from the North & Scotland.

The Eastern Seniors were missing key riders, but young riders like the Brinkhoff brothers, Lewis and Tyler, stepped up to the plate, as well as another Kesgrave rider, Ben Harvey.

A sweltering first half saw the teams never more than two points apart, Midlands leading 46-44 at the interval.

The following heat was advantage East, Dominic Rychardski excluded at the tapes and Chris Jewkes excluded in the rerun for crashing into the East’s Leon Mower, leaving Josh Brooke and Mower to complete one lap for a 7-0 advantage. It was a key point in the meeting.

The Midlands whittled away at the lead, the wide Coventry track proving difficult to defend a race lead on.

The South East & East's James Porter falls as team-mate Harrison Bacon leads Photo: PHIL CLARKEThe South East & East's James Porter falls as team-mate Harrison Bacon leads Photo: PHIL CLARKE

Ipswich led by a point going in to the two nominated heats. Brooke and Matt Hill delivered a 6-4 from the inside grids, meaning the Midlands needed a maximum first and second for a home win. And what a race ensued.

The Midlands pair of Ricky Johnson and Myke Grimes took the lead against Ashley Hill and Lewis Osborne.

Osborne passed Grimes only for Grimes to retake second place, as Hill made a last bend challenge on Grimes.

He couldn’t get past but made space for Osborne to overtake as the three riders crossed the line together, a 6-4 for the Midlands, but crucially a one point victory for the jubilant Eastern Region.

Battle of Britain Seniors

South East & East racer, Lewis Brinkhoff survives Chris Timms' challenge Photo: PHIL CLARKESouth East & East racer, Lewis Brinkhoff survives Chris Timms' challenge Photo: PHIL CLARKE

Midlands 97

East and South East 98: L Brinkhoff 11+1, T Brinkhoff 2, L Osborne 19, L Mower 9+3, A Hill 14, M Hill 15, B Harvey 6, J Brooke 22+1.

The Junior match which had preceded the Seniors had also proved a thriller.

Without England star Pierce Bacon, the Eastern juniors all rose to the occasion in style, despite being behind for most of the meeting.

Josh Brooke and Matt Hill clamp England captain and Midlands  man Paul Heard Photo: PHIL CLARKEJosh Brooke and Matt Hill clamp England captain and Midlands man Paul Heard Photo: PHIL CLARKE

The Midlands led 48-41 at the interval after repeatedly showing their track knowledge with passes splitting Eastern pairs on the third bend, the East’s only heat advantage was 7-3 from Owen Wells and Harrison Bacon.

The second half was tighter and a number of exclusions and mistakes costing the Midlanders.

Adam Cooper and Bacon put the East ahead 88-85 going in to the nominated heats but a disastrous 3-7 heat against Bacon and Ben Clarke put the home team a point up with one to go.

But in a thrilling climax the Brinkhoff brothers, Tyler and Lewis produced a brave ride, Tyler holding Jimmy Wassel at the back while younger brother Lewis showing all his class, twice passing England racer Ewan Hancox, as the celebrations began for the East youngsters.

Battle of Britain Juniors

Midlands 96

East and South East 97: J Porter 12, H Bacon 14+2, B Clarke 14, T Brinkhoff 13+3, A Cooper 11, L Brinkhoff 20, E Mitchell 5, O Wells 8

The squads next visit Exeter to face South and South Wales on August 19, then end the season at home on 16th September when the North and Scotland squads visit Great Blakenham. Juniors begin at 1pm, Seniors at 2.30pm, spectating is free.

2018 SuperTrax Battle of Britain Elite

Senior Class

                        P    W    D    L    Pts

East & South East        4    4    0    0    8

Midlands                4    1    0    3    2

North & Scotland        3    1    0    2    2

South & South Wales        3    1    0    2    2

Junior Class

                        P    W    D    L    Pts

East & South East        4    4    0    0    8

North & Scotland        3    2    0    1    4

South & South Wales        3    1    0    2    2

Midlands                4    0    0    4    0

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