Wolverhampton Wolves beat Swindon
Wolverhampton produced a tenacious performance at Monmore Green to comfortably see off reigning Champions Swindon 53-37 last night, writes Ryan Guest.
The hosts may have been without inspirational skipper Rory Schlein and popular reserve Nathan Greaves, but a mixture of determination and clever use of rider replacement from team manager Peter Adams saw the Monmore men seal another crucial three league points as the gap at the top of the Premiership got even tighter.
It was an impressive all-round display with all six of Wolves’ riders contributing at least one race win apiece.
And the hosts sent out a statement of intent right from the off and raced into an early, nerve-settling lead.
Kyle Howarth drifted Troy Batchelor wide in the first few bends to create a path up the inside for Sam Masters who charged under his Australian compatriot down the back straight, as boss Adams’ rider replacement selection worked to perfection to open in ideal fashion.
And Wolves doubled their advantage in the very next race as Ashley Morris flew away from the tapes while guest reserve Tom Bacon stood his ground on the outside of the opening turns despite a strong challenge from Jack Smith who picked his machine up off the dirt after coming down.
Masters maintained his unbeaten start by an opponent as he intelligently cut back to the inside under Adam Ellis off bend four of the first lap after Swindon’s Tobiasz Musielak was disqualified in the initial attempt for sliding off on his own.
Nick Morris claimed back-to-back race wins in heats four and five for the visitors – the second of which was as a tactical substitute. But on neither occasion were his team-mates able to back him up as the gap remained at 10 points.
But the lead was soon extended to 25-11 when the Swindon No.5 was unable to make it three wins on the spin as Andersen and Howarth did their hard work in the opening lap of the sixth for a third 5-1 of the evening.
Bacon claimed his maiden race win in the top flight in heat eight with a brave move on the outside line, before stand-in captain Thorssell rose to the occasion with four straight victories, the pick of the bunch coming in heat 10 when he blasted around the outside of former Wolf Musielak off bend four.
And it was the Swindon No.4 who denied his former side an even bigger victory, taking the chequered flag in the final two races.
Wolverhampton head to King’s Lynn tomorrow for a double-header on what could prove to be a key night come the end of the standings.