Wolves at the double to go 13 points clear at top

Wolverhampton opened a sizeable 13-point lead at the top of the Premiership by with a superb Bank Holiday win double over Belle Vue.

Wolves go top
Wolves go top

Parrys International Wolves defeated the Aces 49-41 at Monmore Green, following on from their lunchtime success on the road by the same scoreline, and it means Peterborough are now the only team who can deny them league leadership ahead of the play-offs.

The Panthers do have four matches in hand and their visit to Monmore in mid-September could prove vital – but Wolves are undoubtedly favourites at this stage.

They had to fight back from an early deficit at home with the Aces looking set for a 5-1 in Heat 1 until Sam Masters slipped inside Jye Etheridge off the final bend.

Reserve Leon Flint crashed heavily coming out of the second bend in Heat 2, but Ryan Douglas won the re-run and the home side quickly got into their stride.

American stars Luke Becker and Broc Nicol put them ahead for the first time with maximum points in Heat 3 as they saw off an early challenge from Steve Worrall, and it didn’t take long for the lead to be extended.

Becker took the scalp of Dan Bewley in Heat 5 although the brilliant British youngster did pass Douglas for second place, and Wolves went eight points up with good team-riding from Douglas and skipper Rory Schlein against Worrall and Charles Wright in Heat 7.

Flint thankfully emerged from another hefty spill in Heat 8 when he was fetched off by Etheridge at the start of the last lap, and Wolves maintained their advantage even with Bewley taking an extra ride – as the Aces’ No.1 ran a surprise last as a tactical substitute whilst team-mate Wright won Heat 10.

There was another scare for Wolves when Douglas was brought down by Worrall on the last bend of Heat 12, but the Australian walked away after treatment. The home side secured victory in the next race when Masters raced clear of Bewley, before Becker superbly passed Wright in Heat 14 – and a 5-1 consolation for the Aces in the last race couldn’t spoil Wolves’ day.

Wolverhampton 49: Luke Becker 14+1, Rory Schlein 10, Sam Masters 9+1, Ryan Douglas 8+2, Broc Nicol 7+1, Leon Flint 1+1, Nick Morris r/r. Belle Vue 41: Dan Bewley 13, Brady Kurtz 10+1, Charles Wright 7, Nikolaj Busk Jakobsen 6+2, Tom Brennan 4, Jye Etheridge 1, Steve Worrall 0.

n Wolves had started the day with a hugely impressive 49-41 win in Manchester – their sixth victory on the road this season.

Ryan Douglas starred at reserve with a 15-point haul and his sensational effort to hold off Dan Bewley in Heat 15 secured maximum league points for the visitors.

The meeting was effectively won and lost during a blistering opening for Wolves, who went 10 points up after only four races.

Sam Masters and Broc Nicol outpaced Bewley in Heat 1, Douglas and Luke Becker won the next two races, and then a thrilling Heat 4 saw skipper Rory Schlein re-pass Brady Kurtz on the last lap with Leon Flint repeating the move on Nikolaj Busk Jakobsen.

Bewley quickly recovered his form and helped the Aces cut the gap to six when he took a tactical substitute ride in Heat 7 and collected a 5-1 with Kurtz.

But Wolves hit straight back with their own maximum in the next as Flint came up with a big ride whilst Nicol inherited second spot when Tom Brennan ground to a halt.

Wolves then defended well as the home side began to provide race winners, and they still led by six after a tremendous Heat 13 battle when Masters split Bewley and Kurtz.

Douglas and Becker secured victory in the penultimate race despite a good ride to win by home man Charles Wright, before Douglas made sure of all four league points with his last-heat victory.

Belle Vue 41: Dan Bewley 15, Charles Wright 10, Brady Kurtz 8+1, Tom Brennan 4+1, Steve Worrall 3+1, Jye Etheridge 1, Nikolaj Busk Jakobsen 0. Wolverhampton 49: Ryan Douglas 15, Sam Masters 11, Luke Becker 7+1, Broc Nicol 5+3, Rory Schlein 5+2, Leon Flint 5, Richard Lawson 1.

n Wolverhampton Speedway reports provided in association with Parrys International Travel.

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