Scott secures seventh title

Scott Nicholls
Scott Nicholls

There has been no Elite League action for Bees over the past week but there has been plenty on the individual front to enthuse over.

Scott Nicholls made Speedway history by becoming British Champion for the seventh time at Wolverhampton on Monday, beating the previous record of six held by Barry Briggs.

In a thrilling final he beat Chris Harris on the last turn after the two had passed and repassed a number of times.

The chance of making it a Bees clean sweep of the honours went when Edward Kennett went out after a spectacular fall on the fourth turn. Kennett’s bike went completely over the fence but the rider was fortunately unharmed.

In the restart Bees took their second chance and out gated Tai Woffinden who was leading at the time of the incident.

In an incident packed meeting Nicholls and Kennett went straight through to the final but Harris had to negotiate the one-off semi-final after machine problems in his fourth ride cost him a couple of points.

Bees assets Ben Barker and Adam Roynon had good nights with Barker reaching the semi while Roynon weighed in with seven points which included a last race win.

Nicholls now takes the wild card spot in the British Grand Prix at Cardiff on August 25.

Chris Harris had a better night than of late in the Croatian Grand Prix at Gorican, reaching the semi-final stage.

After being squeezed out on the first turn and finishing last in his opening race it looked like another horror night for Bomber.

He quickly upped his game and a lightning start from the outside gate gave him a good win over eventual winner Nicki Pedersen.

Heat nine was programmed to be his hardest race with Tomasz Gollob, Greg Hancock and Chris Holder in opposition. As it was he made another good start and held off his three illustrious rivals to record his second race win of the night and keep his eyes fixed on a semi final place.

His fourth race was to say the least eventful. He led from the start but contrived to go from first to last in the space of a lap. He regained his second spot after Emil Sayfutdinov and Kenneth Bjerre got a bit too close and went wide on the second turn to lap two allowing him to come back underneath.

One point was now needed for progression and this looked doubtful as he was slow away from the taps in heat nineteen. He found a way by the ex-Bees rider Andreas Jonsson to reach the top eight.

In the semi final he rather surprisingly elected to go off gate two which had not produced a race winner since heat four. He was slow away from the start but gained a reprieve when Fredrik Lindgren fell on the third turn and was excluded. In the rerun he was no quicker and although he made up ground on Nicki Pedersen it was not enough and his night was over.

This result moves Harris up a couple of places in the standings but at the halfway stage is still 24 points adrift of the eighth place needed for automatic qualification for 2013. Greg Hancock still leads the series with 97 points while Saturday’s winner Nicki Pedersen moves up to second just six behind.