Racers Put Knights To The Sword.
Reading Racers took their second win in a row over the Milton Keynes Knights in another match that failed to run it's full course.
After rain cut last week's match to five heats, this time it was the curfew at Birmingham's Perry Barr stadium as the clock hit 10 before heat 6 got underway.
With the score standing at 7 -23 in the Racers' favour, the outcome was beyond doubt, but both teams were disappointed at getting in their full quota of rides.
In heat one, the Racers pair of Kieran Douglas - making his debut for the team - and William O'keefe sped from the gate to lead, only for O'keefe to fall on the 4th bend first time around. The home pair of James Spencer and Craig Osborne passed him as he lay on the track but he remounted and eventually passed both riders to score a maximum advantage for the his team.
Heat 2 was stopped after race leader Elliott Kelly was forced to lay his bike down to avoid riding into home man Sam Boon who had fallen in 4th place and failed to clear the track. The referee awarded the race in the order the riders were placed at the time of the stoppage, with Kelly getting 3 points, his team mate Rhys Laker getting 1, and Knights' Stephen Whitehouse sitting between them for 2 points.
With Reading leading by 6 points, Kelly again sped from the tapes to complete an untroubled win, while Laker rounded Spencer in the first bend to take another 5-1 and put the match score at 4-14.
There was some delay to the fourth race getting underway as Boon's machine failed before the start, exceeding the two minute time allowance. He attempted to make it back out on a different bike to start from a 15 metre handicap, but again ran out of time, leaving the race with 3 riders only. Douglas blasted to his second win while his partner O'keefe also made a good start to follow him home ahead of Whitehouse.
The score now standing at 5-19 it became clear that the match wouldn't be completed but there was time for one more, as O'keefe completed the match unbeaten by an opponent while Laker gave chase to Whitehouse for second, getting within striking distance but unable to make a pass. With Knight's number two Osborne at the back it was another heat advantage to the visitors leaving the final score Milton Keynes 7, Reading 23.
After a disappointing start to the season in which they lost their first two matches, the Racers have now won their last two, but in both cases will feel they could have further improved their points difference if the respective final races had taken place. They now sit amongst four teams on 4 points in the Midland & Southern Development League. Despite their disappointment at the abandonment the club have to be happy with a powerful performance over the home team, and won't be complaining about a win by such a margin.
MK Knights 7
J. Spencer 2, C. Osborne 0, S. Boon 0, S. Whitehouse 5.
Reading Racers 23
K. Douglas 6, W. O'keefe 7+2, E. Kelly 6, R. Laker 4+1.
Heat Details: Ht 1. Douglas, O'keefe, Spencer, Osborne. Ht 2. Kelly, Whitehouse, Laker, Boon fx. Ht 3. Kelly, Laker, Spencer, Osborne. Ht 4. Douglas, O'keefe, Whitehouse, Boon ex.
Ht 5. O'keefe, Whitehouse, Laker, Osborne.
Match report by Gene Carter.