COBRA'S GARAGE MAHAL SLIDE IN RYDE
Best Pairs : 19/07/2018
Speedway Spotlight On Pairs Action
This week’s speedway action at the Andrew Younie Smallbrook Stadium will be on Thursday (19th July) and features the third staging of the ‘Slide In Ryde’ Best Pairs tournament sponsored by Cobra’s Garage Mahal with bike mad former American Gladiator ‘Cobra’ (aka Steve Luxton) starting his 2018 UK speedway tour by backing the meeting.
‘Wightlink’ Warriors’ regulars Alfie Bowtell, Scott Campos, Danno Verge and Shaun Tedham are included in the event whilst skipper Ben Morley is being given a few days off to recuperate after a recent series of heavy knocks.
Each of the six competing pairs has attracted team sponsorships with the Speedway Widows duo out to defend the title that they won last year, albeit that a double injury blow has forced a change of riding personnel. Choosing a pre-meeting favourite is not easy as the line up (drawn independently at Peterborough speedway last weekend) has produced a very evenly balanced program which bodes well for a really closely contested meeting that will run over fifteen qualifying heats, two semi-finals and a Grand Final. The unusual 4,3,2,0 scoring system is also sure to add to the intrigue and maybe catch a few out along the way.
Writing in this Thursday’s match night programme, co-promoter Barry Bishop is clearly delighted to be able to meet up again with one of the club’s main sponsors on his return to Smallbrook. “I am so pleased to welcome back our very good friend Steve Luxton for his Best Pairs event. Being based in Florida, Steve is one of our long distance supporters but that hasn’t stopped him being a constant source of sponsorship, encouragement and innovative suggestions that help us be the very best we can be.
Last year when Steve was here we had a terrific night full of fun and exciting on track action and we are planning for more of the same tonight”.
As usual, gates open at 17.30, pit access will be from 18.15 to 18.45, and the rider parade will be at 18.45 with the first race at 19.00.
Stamford Bridge – Tom Brennan (Eastbourne) and Jamie Bursill (Unattached)
Full Monty – Alfie Bowtell (IOW) and Alex Spooner (Kent)
Steve’s Scorchers – Taylor Hampshire (Kent) and Danno Verge (IOW)
Retail Renegades – Leon Flint (Birmingham) and Shaun Tedham (IOW)
Speedway Widows – Jason Edwards (Eastbourne) and Ryan Terry-Daley (Plymouth)
London Loonies – Scott Campos (IOW) and Richard Andrews (Plymouth)
Meeting Reserve: Jamie Sealey (Unattached)
Warrior Campos Lifts Speedway Pairs Title
‘Wightlink’ Warriors popular heat leader Scott Campos was in top form as he linked up with Plymouth rider Richard Andrews to win the ‘Slide In Ryde’ Best Pairs competition held at the Andrew Younie Smallbrook Stadium tonight.
Racing under the banner of ‘London Loonies’ the pair made an ideal combination for this type of meeting with Campos’ fast starts being complimented by Andrews brave bursts when behind. Andrews efforts were especially praiseworthy coming from last to second in the Final having twice taken nasty falls during heats five and seven.
Facing off with the London Loonies in the Grand Final were Jason Edwards (Eastbourne) and Ryan Terry-Daley (Plymouth) representing the ‘Speedway Widows’ who came through qualification and their semi-final with a consistent series of scores that appreciated the unusual 4,3,2,0 scoring system and the benefit of being second and third in a heat rather than first. Indeed the two top scoring pairs in the qualification rounds were both eliminated at the semi final stage because a race win was insufficient when the second team member didn’t score.
Racing in front of meeting sponsor Steve Luxton from Cobra’s Garage Mahal on a flying visit from Florida, the six pairs were certainly well matched on paper and so it proved on track with plenty of incident and passing to keep a good sized crowd well entertained.
As early as heat one, Tom Brennan (Eastbourne) and Jamie Bursill representing ‘Stamford Bridge’ both suffered simultaneous first bend engine problems handing the ‘Full Monty’ pair featuring Warriors Alfie Bowtell and Alex Spooner (Kent) an early 7-0 heat win. On the night Bowtell was the stand out performer recording wins in all six of his races, however that wasn’t enough to manoeuvre the Full Monty boys to the final as they dipped out 5-4 in the semi-final to the Speedway Widows despite Spooner’s very best efforts to find a way past his opponents in front.
The close heats and passing were reflected in the efforts of Taylor Hampshire (Kent) who was always a threat and with Warrior’s Danno Verge tigering away as always, ‘Steve’s Scorchers’ full deserved a semi-final slot. Brennan too was impressive and would have scored more heavily had it not been for the first race gremlins and a heat eight fall when trying a daring pass on Leon Flint (Birmingham) whilst Flint himself was unlucky to break his saddle just as race ten was about to start. He missed the time allowance and had to start from a fifteen metre handicap that was just a bit too much to recover.
After finishing in the runners-up position last year, a delighted Scott Campos spoke after the meeting, “Phew, what a night. I’m very pleased. We got close last year and I was hopeful this year. The pairs were very even and it was a hard meeting to call. We tried something a little bit different with the bike tonight and it certainly seemed to work. Got to say a big well done to Richard. He took a couple of heavy knocks early on but he kept his chin up, battled away and I’m told did some awesome passes to get with me in the final. Absolutely chuffed. Great night for us.”
Qualifying Group Scores:
Stamford Bridge 14
Full Monty 30
Steve’s Scorchers 25
Retail Renegades 19
Speedway Widows 21
London Loonies 24
Semi Final 1: Speedway Widows beat Full Monty 5-4
Semi Final 2: London Loonies beat Steve’ Scorchers 6-3
Final: London Loonies (Scott Campos 4, Richard Andrews 3) beat Speedway Widows (Ryan Terry-Daley 2, Jason Edwards 0) 7-2