Brummies v Robins heat by heat

SUPBRU Sheila Bowen:
Another fine evening as I enter the stadium, I think summer has finally arrived!
This meeting has been billed by Sky as a trial run of the play offs.
Wow! What an accolade.
But I’d rather not think that far ahead… a) because it’s …counting your chickens etc. and b) it will mean it’s the end of the season!
I’ll be happy if we can continue with our current form, but I’d be even happier if I could actually see the Brummies team name at the top of the league tables… how long will we have to wait?

On with the meeting…
Cory Gathercole replaces injured Kacper Gomolski.

Brummies off gates 1&3 for heat 1.

Heat 1.
Hans Andersen like a rocket from the tapes, into the 1st bend Hans Andersen, Martin Smolinski, Jason Doyle, Nick Morris the race order. Nick Morris was very slow away from the tapes things didn’t improve as he pulled up on the 2nd lap and retired from the race. There were no changes in the race order.

Andersen, Smolinski, Doyle (Morris did not finish)

Result 3-3

Heat 2.
As the riders came out of the 2nd bend Ashley Birks had the race lead, Josh Auty in 2nd, Nicolas Covatti in 3rd and Cory Gathercole in 4th. At the start of lap 2 Josh Auty passed Ashley Birks on the inside on the home straight. Nicolas Covatti chased hard behind Ashley Birks for 2 laps and very nearly took him on the line!

Auty, Birks, Covatti, Gathercole

Result    4-2   (7-5)

Heat 3.
Danny King, Ben Barker, Peter Kildermand the race order into the 2nd bend, meanwhile Edward Kennett slid off on bend 1 while at the back. Race stopped and all 4 riders back for the re-run.
A good start for the Brummies with Danny King followed by Ben Barker into the 1st bend, Peter Kildermand in 3rd and Edward Kennett in 4th. Peter Kildermand powered past Ben Barker on the back straight of lap 1 to take up 2nd place, Ben pushed hard to try to re-claim the position but couldn’t match the speed of Kildermand, meanwhile Danny had built up a healthy lead and won the race with ease.

King, Kildermand, Barker, Kennett

Result    4-2   (11-7)

Heat 4.
From the tapes Cory Gathercole, Josh Auty, Chris Harris, Troy Batchelor. A very short-lived lead for Gathercole as he slid off as he exited bend 1, he quickly picked himself up but didn’t re-join the race. Troy Batchelor stormed around the outside to pass the Brummie pairing on the home straight at the end of lap 1. Chris Harris took the lead from Batchelor on the back straight of lap 2 and exactly 1 lap later Josh Auty also passed Batchelor for a well earned 5-1!  brumscarf  brumscarf

Harris, Auty, Batchelor, (Gathercole fell)

Result   5-1   (16-8)

Heat 5.
Out of bend 2 lap 1, race order… Danny King, Hans Andersen, Ben Barker, Nick Morris. As he entered the 3rd bend Nick Morris fell, he picked himself up and rapidly re-joined the race. The race ended exactly as it started, although Nick Morris was a good half a lap down as a result of his fall.

King, Andersen, Barker, Morris

Result   4-2   (20-10)

Heat 6.
With the Robins now 10 points behind they elect Troy Batchelor to take the tactical ride in the black & white helmet.
Troy Batchelor was jet propelled from the tapes and led into the 1st bend, Martin Smolinski in 2nd place, Jason Doyle in 3rd and Ashley Birks in 4th. Once again the race finished in the same order it started with Troy Batchelor opening a good lead to take his double race points.

Batchelor, Smolinski, Doyle, Birks

Result 3-6   (23-16)

Heat 7.
The Robins duo made superb gates as Edward Kennett and Peter Kildermand led into the 1st bend, Chris Harris followed by Nicolas Covatti in 3rd & 4th. As they raced down the back straight Kennett and Kildermand exchanged places. Chris Harris raced hard behind Kennett for 2 laps and claimed his reward as he passed Kennett on the home straight of lap 3. Our 10-point lead halved in just 2 races!  cryer1

Kildermand, Harris, Kennett, Covatti

Result   2-4   (25-20)

Heat 8.
As they enter the 1st bend it’s Josh Auty in 1st, Nick Morris in 2nd, Cory Gathercole in 3rd and Martin Smolinski in 4th… but not for long… Martin storms around the outside out of bend 1 and succeeds the last to first move as he exits bend 2. Nick Morris now in 3rd place eases past Josh Auty on the home straight of lap 2 but in virtually the same spot on lap 3 Josh re-claims the 2nd place for a fine 5-1!  clap1  clap1

Smolinski, Auty, Morris, Gathercole

Result   5-1   (30-21)

Heat 9.
Troy Batchelor once again fast out of the gate very closely followed by Danny King, Ashley Birks and Ben Barker. By the time they left the first bend it could have been anyone’s race, but Troy Batchelor keeps his 1st place. Ben pushes hard behind Ashley Birks and manages the pass on the home straight at the end of lap 1. While Danny and Troy held onto their respective positions with Ben and Ashley tussling with each other for 2 laps, each rider virtually taking turns to edge in front with every turn. Ben getting the better lines holding on to his 3rd place for a shared heat.

Batchelor, King, Barker, Birks

Result   3-3   (33-24)

Heat 10.
Peter Kildermand, Martin Smolinski, Edward Kennett, Jason Doyle the race position into the 1st bend. Jason Doyle quickly recovered from his poor start by storming from last to first on the back straight of lap 1. Martin Smolinski now in 3rd place makes short work of overhauling Peter Kildermand on bend 2 lap 2 to score another 5-1 for the Brummies!  brumscarf  brumscarf

Doyle, Smolinski, Kildermand, Kennett

Result   5-1   (38-25)

Heat 11.
Swindon now 13 points adrift chose Hans Andersen to wear the black & white helmet for their 2nd tactical ride. Josh Auty replaces Nicolas Covatti.
Hans Andersen, Chris Harris, Josh Auty, Nick Morris into bend 1. Josh Auty passes Chris Harris on the back straight of lap 1 to take up the chase behind Hans Andersen he catches him as they enter bend 3 of lap 1 but just as he edges past Hans Andersen falls and the race is stopped.
The referee judges that Josh is to blame for the tumble and excludes him from the re-run.
Re-run with 3 riders only.
As the lone Brummie rider in the race Chris Harris makes a superb effort to take the lead over Hans Andersen as they exit bend 2 with Nick Morris in 3rd place. Regretfully Andersen’s superior speed sees him passing Chris Harris on the home straight at the end of the 1st lap, Chris chases hard behind Andersen but never looks like he has the power to pass. Once again the Robins make take the full 6 points from their tactical ride.

Andersen, Harris, Morris (Auty excluded)

Result   2-7   (40-32)

Heat 12.
Out of the 2nd bend, Ashley Birks in 1st, Danny King in 2nd, Josh Auty in 3rd and Edward Kennett in 4th. Danny and Josh trade place on the back straight of lap 1 as Josh gives chase behind Ashley Birks. On every bend Josh tries hard to pass Birks on the outside but never gets enough space to make the pass until the last bend of the last lap where he switched to the inside and passed Birks just before the line! While all the excitement is going on at the front Edward Kennett has engine failure and comes to a halt on the home straight at the end of lap 3. Superb ride by Josh!

Auty, Birks, King, (Kennett e/f)

Result   4-2   (44-34)

Heat 13.
Absolutely anyone’s race into bend 1 and 2 of the 1st lap, race positions only clear as they move down the back straight with Jason Doyle in the lead, Hans Andersen in 2nd, Troy Batchelor in 3rd and Chris Harris in last place. This was also the positions at the end of the race, but far from being a boring processional race… Hans Andersen was glued to Jason’s back wheel for the entire race, mapping his every move and turn in an attempt to take the lead… but Jason held his nerve and took a fantastic win! Albeit a shared heat, but interestingly only the 1st bonus point scored by the Robins.  clap1  clap1

Doyle, Andersen, Batchelor, Harris

Result   3-3   (47-37)

Heat 14.
Ben Barker, Nicolas Covatti, Peter Kildermand, Cory Gathercole the 1,2,3,4 into the 1st bend.
Peter Kildermand eased past Nicolas Covatti to take 2nd place on the back straight. No further changes for the rest of the race but it was good to see Ben flying around the track in first place for the entire race!

Barker, Kildermand, Covatti, Gathercole

Result   4-2   (51-39)

Heat 15.
Nominated riders: Jason Doyle, Martin Smolinski, Troy Batchelor, and Hans Andersen.
Robins choose gates 1 & 3.
Into bend 1 Martin Smolinski, Troy Batchelor, Jason Doyle, Hans Andersen, at the start of bend 2 all change… now Troy Batchelor, Hans Andersen, Jason Doyle and Martin Smolinski the positions as the head down the back straight. Jason Doyle locked up as he entered the 3rd bend of lap 2; he got the bike back on course but was now in last place. A consolation 5-1 to the Robins, but all 3 points to the Brummies!

Batchelor, Andersen, Smolinski, Doyle

Result   1-5   (52-44)

Jason Doyle 8+2
Martin Smolinski 10+1
Danny King 9
Ben Barker 6+1
Chris Harris 7
Nicolas Covatti 2
Josh Auty 10+2

Hans Andersen 15+1
Nick Morris 2
Edward Kennett 1
Peter Kildermand 8
Troy Batchelor 14+1
Ashley Birks 4
Cory Gathercole 0

Meeting summary
What can I say… the optimist in me said we would win… pessimistically I thought we might drop a point but in the end it was a very convincing win over the current league champions!
Once again Brummies strength in depth from 6 riders, only Nico having a lack-lustre night. Conversely the Robins relied too heavily on just 2 riders, only Kildermand offering them any support, and without the addition of the extra 6 points from the 2 tactical rides the score-line would have been woeful.
Only 4 no scores on the Brummies racecard.
Jason rose to the challenge of his new No.1 position with a fine 8 + 2.
Josh Auty was electric with his 10 + 2 (from 5 rides… including an exclusion from 1 race!) and fully deserved being named Rider of the Night.
Tonight I am a very proud Brummie indeed!