SPEEDWAY POSTPONEMENTS - THURSDAY OCTOBER 19:
Sheffield v Redcar - OFF
Re-staging date: Monday October 23, 7.30pm
CHAMPIONSHIP KO CUP S/F 2nd leg
Glasgow v Peterborough - OFF
Re-staging date: TOMORROW (Friday October 20, 7pm)
BELLE Vue were crowned National League Champions after a tense Grand Final against Eastbourne on Wednesday.
The Colts pulled back a 12-point first leg deficit by Heat 6, but the pressure then ramped up during a succession of five successive shared races.
Dan Bewley fell whilst leading Heat 10, causing team mate Kyle Bickley to crash heavily, but a 4-2 in Heat 12 finally put the Colts ahead, and Bewley responded to team up with Jack Smith for a key 5-1 in Heat 13.
Skipper Rob Shuttleworth then won Heat 14 to secure the title, with the Colts eventually running out 56-34 winners on the night, and by ten points on aggregate.
Bickley, with 14+1 from five rides, carded a paid maximum, with Smith (14+1) unbeaten after a first-race retirement and Bewley (13+2) and Shuttleworth (10+2) also contributed heavily.
Guest reserve Drew Kemp impressed for the Eagles with 9+3, but they were left in the frustrating position of being National League runners-up for a third successive season.
Smith said: “It’s been a dream to be part of this club this year. My dad was a legend of the Aces and I’m so proud to have represented Belle Vue at both levels this year.
“On the night, it was a bit of a frustrating start for me because my engine went on the line in my first race and my dad had suggested changing bikes before I went out; and I wish I had!
“But that’s trivial compared to the achievement of the team. We’ve gone all all season unbeaten at home and now we’re National League Champions, it’s just an indescribable and amazing feeling.”
Eastbourne boss Connor Dugard said: “We always knew it would be tough tonight after losing the last two races on Saturday.
“Of course, we are disappointed to have lost but we gave everything and came up just short. The boys did us proud and gave their all. We congratulate the Belle Vue Colts.
“As team manager I could not have asked for more from our team as they battled throughout to contain the Colts. We did have some bad luck with Josh Bailey and Drew Kemp's bikes blowing up. That happens in speedway, but you cannot take away anything from Belle Vue.”
GLASGOW bid to pull back a ten-point deficit when they host Peterborough tonight (Thursday) in their Championship KO Cup semi-final.
Ipswich are awaiting the winners of the tie in the Final with the Panthers having secured a 50-40 win from the first leg last weekend.
The Tigers again call up James Sarjeant to guest for Tom Perry at reserve, whilst the Panthers have Ben Hopwood in for Tom Bacon, with rider-replacement for Bradley Wilson-Dean.
Glasgow star Richard Lawson said: “We’re still in the KO Cup and hopefully we can retain that.
“We have had a bit of a dip but it would be nice to end the season with some silverware and give everyone a chance to celebrate.”
Panthers boss Carl Johnson said: “We cannot allow Glasgow to build any sort of momentum early in the meeting tonight. A 10-point advantage could be wiped out in the space of three of four races, and that’s not something we want to see happen.
“But, on the other hand, we could also put the tie out of Glasgow’s reach in a similar amount of time if we start well.
“We have plenty of guys capable of winning races up there and the key thing will be to avoid last places. It’s going to be a high-pressure night but I’m confident we can handle it.”
SHEFFIELD will honour their title heroes on a night of celebration as they host Redcar at Owlerton tonight (Thursday).
Simon Stead’s side clinched the SGB Championship crown at Ipswich at the end of last month but will now bring the trophy back home, with presentations taking place immediately after their league clash with the Bears.
Co-promoter Peter Mole said: “We obviously won the league at Ipswich, so the fans haven’t had chance to see the trophy yet along with the team.
“It’s a good chance for fans to have photos both with the riders and the trophies in the panorama room. We’ll be announcing our Rider of the Year award as well and getting the thoughts of the riders on the season.
“We hope as many fans as possible can join us, and we’ll hopefully end the season with another big win on the track against Redcar as well.”
Scott Nicholls and Ty Proctor guest for the Tigers with Josh Grajczonek, Kyle Howarth and Josh Bates ruled out, whilst Jake Allen and Josh Auty head up a much-changed Bears side.
SWINDON’s title-winning heroes will gather for a night of celebration at the Abbey Stadium tonight (Thursday).
The Robins will reunite for the first time since clinching the SGB Premiership on a memorable night at Wolverhampton on October 4, courtesy of a dramatic last heat decider.
Management and riders, except Jason Doyle who has his sights on securing his first World Championship in Australia on October 28, will be in attendance and will be available for photos and autographs after the official proceedings.
Robins boss Alun Rossiter said: “Because of other racing commitments, we haven’t had chance to celebrate it yet so we’re all really, really looking forward to Thursday.
“We stayed a bit longer after winning the league at Wolverhampton but then the boys went off as normal because they’ve still been racing here, there and everywhere.
“But I’m sure when we’re all back together at the Abbey on a non-racenight and just a special event to bring the trophy home, I’m sure that’s when it will properly sink in.”
THURSDAY OCTOBER 19:
SGB CHAMPIONSHIP: Sheffield v Redcar 7.30
CHAMPIONSHIP KO CUP S/F 2nd leg: Glasgow v Peterborough 7.30
FRIDAY OCTOBER 20:
NATIONAL LEAGUE KO CUP S/F 2nd leg: Belle Vue v Mildenhall 7.30
AUTUMN SPECTACULAR: Plymouth 7.15
BRITISH 125cc FINAL: Belle Vue (follows KO Cup match)
SATURDAY OCTOBER 21:
TRAVEL PLUS NATIONAL LEAGUE: Stoke v Buxton 4.30, Stoke v Isle of Wight (follows previous fixture)
NATIONAL LEAGUE KO CUP FINAL 1st/2nd leg: Eastbourne v Mildenhall/Belle Vue 7.30
SUNDAY OCTOBER 22:
SGB CHAMPIONSHIP: Newcastle v Workington 4pm, Newcastle v Redcar (follows previous fixture)
Results Wednesday October 18, 2017
TRAVEL PLUS NATIONAL LEAGUE GRAND FINAL 2nd leg
Belle Vue 56 (Jack Smith 14+1/Kyle Bickley 14+1)
Eastbourne 34 (Drew Kemp 9+3)
Belle Vue win 89-79 on aggregate