Hungry Wolverhampton Wolves leading the pack
Wolverhampton are back on top of the Premiership table following last night’s comfortable 52-38 win over Somerset.
With previous leaders Swindon edged out at Belle Vue, Wolves took over at the summit with a solid team performance to maintain their perfect home record.
The Rebels presented much more of a challenge than on their dismal visits of last season, with world champion Jason Doyle unsurprisingly offering a considerable threat.
But in the final analysis it was a shock 5-1 from skipper Rory Schlein and Cameron Heeps in heat nine – when Doyle was taking a tactical substitute ride – which swung the meeting firmly in Wolves’ favour.
Schlein dropped just one point from five rides, and all of the Wolves top five won at least one race – with reserves Nathan Greaves and Ashley Morris combining for a 5-1 in heat two.
There was an early scare for Sam Masters when he was sent tumbling by Bradley Wilson-Dean in heat four, but after losing out to Richard Lawson in the re-run he responded with a win over Jack Holder in his second ride.
That eclipse of Doyle in his additional outing hit the Rebels hard, and Wolves were in no mood to ease up as Jacob Thorssell and Kyle Howarth combined for maximum points in the next race, meaning a six-point lead had become 14 in the space of two heats.
To be fair to the Rebels, they refused to go under completely, and Doyle overhauled Thorssell in heat 13 to keep them in contention for a league point.
A further 4-2 followed in heat 14 as Schlein’s Monmore winning run was finally ended by Holder, and it left the visitors needing a 5-1 in the last race for a consolation.
But in a dramatic finale the maximum advantage actually went Wolves’ way as Doyle hit the front only to come to grief entering the second lap, with Schlein and Thorssell making no mistake against Lawson in the re-run.
That left the Rebels with nothing to show for their efforts, while Wolves now prepare for a top-of-the-table visit to Swindon on Thursday.