SPEEDWAY by Alan Goodman

Alan Goodman
Alan Goodman

Great fightback to beat league favourites

Coventry Buildbase Bees have ridden against Poole Pirates four times already this season and it was only in the last meeting at Brandon on Friday that they managed to defeat the high flying Dorset side.

After being on the end of a heavy defeat on Wednesday they came back on Friday with one of their legendary recoveries to win by one point in a match decided on the last turn of the final heat.

It was learned earlier in the week that Kacper Woryna would be out of action for between six and eight weeks and they would have to utilise the rider/replacement facility until the end of the month when other options could be considered.

Storm’s match at Belle Vue was cancelled due to the problems still existing at their new track.

Poole 60, Bees 29

Elite League

Poole was at full strength but Bees were utilising the rider-replacement facility for the injured Woryna.

Bees made a good start with Krzysztof Kasprzak and Jason Garrity leading from the start. Although the home captain Chris Holder soon passed Garrity, it was a promising start.

Poole reserves took a maximum in the next before Chris Harris and Danny King brought the scores level in the next.

Garrity took a R/R ride in the next and combined well with Josh Bates to hold out Krzysztof Buczkowski and put Bees ahead.

Poole hit back immediately with the same in heat five to bring the scores back level.

Heat six was the beginning of the end for Bees. Firstly Harris was excluded for a fall at the end of the first lap after a coming together with Buczkowski and then in the restart Kasprzak took an awkward tumble into the first bend air fence and was also excluded.

The resultant 5-0 fired up Poole and another 5-1 after Holder had overtaken both Bees put them well in the driving seat.

Three more successive maximums followed to put the hosts 40-19 up with just five heats to go. In the third of these Kasprzak took a tactical ride but appeared to have been affected by his earlier mishap and despite a good effort could make no impression on Davey Watt or Hans Andersen.

The run was slightly halted in heat eleven when Harris managed to get by Holder for second place.

Another 5-1 followed after Adam Ellis passed Bates on the run-in.

Harris was an easy winner of heat thirteen before yet another home 5-1 increased the lead to a massive 31 points.

Heat fifteen was shared with Andersen just holding out Harris to become top scorer against his old club. This made the final score 60-29 to Poole and must leave Bees management with some serious thinking to do over the coming days.

Bees’ scorers: Harris 10, Garrity 6(2), Bates 5, Kasprzak 4, King, Sarjeant 2.

Bees 47, Poole 46

Elite League

Bees fielded the same six as Wednesday but Poole had Fredrik Lindgren guesting for Holder who was unavailable. They were also down to six riders as Brady Kurtz was absent through illness.

Ellis took the R/R ride in the opening heat and appeared to get a ‘flier’ as the Pirates went ahead immediately.

He took another win in the next and with Newman second, opened up an early eight-point lead.

Andersen won heat three despite a good effort by Harris but although King took third, Bees still trailed.

Poole took another maximum in the next after Bates had fallen on the first turn.

Heat five was better for Bees. At the first attempt to run, Buczkowski took a nasty tumble on the back straight but was unhurt. In the rerun his partner Ellis again made the start but both Garrity and Sarjeant went by in successive laps for Bees first maximum of the night.

Poole took another 4-2 in the next and many fans forecast of another heavy defeat were beginning to be realised.

Heat seven changed the course of things. Harris was given a tactical ride for double points and obliged with a six-point win. Partner Kasprzak followed him home and the resultant 8-1 brought Bees to within four points.

Poole were not finished and led out of a tight first turn to heat eight and made the score 29-22 at the halfway stage.

Garrity rode a good first turn to win a shared heat eight and at this point Bees began to claw their way back into contention.

Harris and king took a maximum in heat nine after Ellis had fallen after a close tussle with King and heat eleven saw Kasprzak win his first race of the night and Garrity regain third after a mistake by Andersen. At this point only one point separated the teams.

Bees went ahead for the first time in heat twelve. Anxiety at the tapes caused a restart but Sarjeant was a good winner with Bates holding out for third in what was probably the most vital race of the match.

A two-in-one heat thirteen saw Lindgren beat Harris and Andersen get the better of Kasprzak to Put Poole back ahead.

King and Bates took a maximum in the penultimate race to leave Bees needing just two points for victory.

It was not plain sailing and Bees may consider themselves slightly fortunate in the final reckoning.

For some reason Garrity was nominated for the final race instead of possibly King or Kasprzak. When the race got underway Andersen led from the start with Lindgren and Harris interchanging behind him. It looked to be Poole’s until Lindgren suffered a puncture on the final turn allowing Harris to snatch second place and victory on the line amid much cheering among Bees faithful.

This will probably be remembered as the match of the season and Bees deserve credit for the fightback against the league favourites.

Bees’ scorers: Harris 15, Garrity 9, King 8(2), Sarjeant 6(1), Kasprzak 5(1), Bates 4(1).

Preview

It is a busy weekend at Brandon with both teams in action.

On Friday Storm face Buxton in a National League encounter. The ‘Hitman’ have a revamped young side which includes former Storm rider Oliver Greenwood.

With the first GP taking place in Slovenia on Saturday, Bees will ride on Monday night when they entertain Swindon. The Robins have already beaten Bees at Swindon and have a useful looking line-up which includes Jason Doyle, Nick Morris,and Josh Grajczonek and should make Bees fight for their points.

Both meetings start at 7.30pm.

Alan Goodman.