TOM Bacon raced to an 18-point maximum to lead Birmingham to a 54-36 win over Eastbourne in the National League.
Bacon reeled off six successive wins for the Brummies, and with reserve Leon Flint (16+1) and Danyon Hume (15+1) also in the major points, the home side accounted for all but one of the race wins.
The Eagles’ sole success came from Tom Brennan, who top-scored for the visitors with nine.
Bacon said: “Eastbourne are a big name at this level, they always build a strong side and that’s no different this season.
“But to go out there and win like we did shows what we’re capable of - and that’s with some of the boys not having the best of nights.
“But while we’re performing at the top end and while Leon is going good at reserve, that gives the rest of the team a bit more time to rebuild their confidence and there’s still plenty more to come which is exciting.”
IPSWICH host Sheffield at Foxhall tonight (Thursday) in a repeat of last season’s Championship Grand Final.
Both sides have made slow starts to their league campaigns in 2018 and will be keen for a boost heading into the summer period.
Rory Schlein takes over at No.1 for the Witches, who bring in James Sarjeant to guest as Michael Hartel is on Speedway of Nations duty.
Ipswich boss Ritchie Hawkins said: “I think it will be a really tough meeting and we need to be on our game.
“Sheffield will come looking to win, and the situation is at the moment is that we have not started the season well.
“Teams will not come to Foxhall fearful, they come here believing they can get a result and we need to turn that around quickly by beating teams like Sheffield.”
REDCAR will have three debutants on show in their Championship clash with Berwick tonight (Thursday).
Dimitri Berge and Nathan Greaves joined the Media Prima Arena outfit earlier in the week, whilst Thomas Jorgensen is fit to resume after missing out due to illness last week.
Ty Proctor guests at No.1 for the injured Ben Barker, whilst the Bandits are at full strength – including Theo Pijper, recently dropped by the Bears, at reserve.
Redcar boss Jitendra Duffill said: “We must perform well over the next few weeks as we aim to climb the league table and restore supporter confidence.
“We have a lot of work to do from here and although it will be very difficult for us to push for a play-off place, that doesn’t mean that we should give up and I hope this proves to our supporters that we are doing our best to put things right.”
ISLE of Wight No.1 Ben Morley makes a rapid return from injury in tonight’s (Thursday) National Trophy clash with Eastbourne.
Morley was hurt in a crash at Redcar a fortnight ago but is fit to ride after wrist damage, whilst Jamie Bursill guests at reserve for the absent Adam Portwood.
Warriors co-promoter Barry Bishop said: “After the disappointment of last week’s rained off meeting, not to mention our heavy defeat at Mildenhall on Sunday, it will be good to get on to home shale again.
“In addition to the home meeting against the Eagles, we go to Plymouth on Friday for a league meeting and so this week the management team will be working hard with the riders to restore confidence and generate a belief in ourselves that will see us back to winning ways.”
BIRMINGHAM have snapped up exciting talent James Shanes.
The 21-year-old joins the Brummies as injury cover for Jack Parkinson-Blackburn who is out for the foreseeable future with a shoulder problem.
Shanes, who last raced in the National League for Kent in 2016, says he is looking forward to making his debut in next Wednesday’s (June 13) National Trophy home fixture against Buxton.
He said: “As soon as Birmingham contacted me there was no hesitation from me. I know from when I rode for Kent how good a club Birmingham are and their fans are great too.
“It’s also good for me as well because I know a lot of people there already. My speedway career started with Laurence (Rogers – team manager) at Coventry in 2013 and that was my first team place.
“I also rode with David (Mason – co-promoter) at Kent and I learnt quite a bit from him to be honest.
“However long my stay with the club lasts, I want to score plenty of points and put on a show for the supporters as well.”
GREAT Britain will have three hopefuls competing in this weekend’s 250cc European Championships in Denmark.
In-form Birmingham reserve Leon Flint will line-up alongside Jordan Palin in the first semi-final on Saturday with Nathan Ablitt in the second semi later the same night.
The Young Lions trio will be chasing a top seven finish in their respective event to book their place in Sunday’s Final.
THURSDAY JUNE 7:
CHAMPIONSHIP: Ipswich v Sheffield 7.30, Redcar v Berwick 7.30
NATIONAL TROPHY: Isle of Wight v Eastbourne 7pm
FRIDAY JUNE 8:
CHAMPIONSHIP: Glasgow v Peterborough 7.30, Scunthorpe v Newcastle 7.30
CHAMPIONSHIP SHIELD: Edinburgh v Workington 7.30
TRAVEL PLUS NATIONAL LEAGUE: Plymouth v Isle of Wight 7.15
SATURDAY JUNE 9:
CHAMPIONSHIP: Berwick v Redcar 7pm
TRAVEL PLUS NATIONAL LEAGUE: Stoke v Mildenhall 7pm
NATIONAL TROPHY: Eastbourne v Plymouth 7.30
Results Wednesday June 6, 2018
Birmingham 54 (Tom Bacon 18)
Eastbourne 36 (Tom Brennan 9)
National League points: Birmingham 3 Eastbourne 0