Monday 22 May, 2017
STOKE narrowly missed out on taking a point from their Travel Plus National League meeting at Kent’s Central Park circuit on Monday night losing out 45-38 after the meeting was abandoned with one heat remaining due to the Kings track 8.30pm curfew with the result standing.

Mitchell Davey was again in superb form for the Potters has he gained a 12-point maximum and he was well supported by David Wallinger 9+2 and Tony Atkin who scored 8 points.

The A.R. Richards Potters gained an opening heat 4-2 advantage as number one Mitchell Davey got the better of Luke Bowen with Shaun Tedham taking third place.

The Kings levelled the scores in heat three with a 4-2 from Jack Thomas and Nathan Stoneman over Tony Atkin before Luke Priest and David Wallinger gained a maximum 5-1 score over former Potter Ben Hopwood.

Kent struck back to level again in heat six as home number one Bowen and Luke Clifton got the better of Priest and David Speight leaving the scores at 18-18.

Heat eight sees’ some high drama as David Wallinger lifts from the start and hits Clifton who in turn picks up some grip leaving Tedham with nowhere to go but into Clifton causing both riders to fall. SCB referee Barbara Horley invites all four of the riders back for the restart of the race. Tedham walks back to the pits after medical attention while Clifton is ruled out of the meeting with a suspected broken collarbone and ribs, with Bradley Andrews replacing him in the rerun heat. Wallinger took the chequered flag in the rerun but Andrews and Anders Rowe took the minor placings after Tedham retired from the race for a drawn heat as the scores remain level.

Kent take the lead for the first time in the meeting in heat nine as Stoneman and Thomas combine for a maximum 5-1 heat advantage over Priest and David Speight to open a four-point advantage over the Potters who trail 29-25.

Stoke struck back in heat eleven as Davey headed home Hopwood with Wallinger who replaced Tedham taking third for a Potters 4-2 reducing the Kings lead to just two points. Wallinger is again brought in as a reserve ride in heat twelve replacing Speight as Potters tea manager Malcolm Vasey shuffles his pack and heat twelve becomes a bit of a disaster for the Potters as Wallinger is excluded for falling under the challenge from Stoneman, while Ryan Terry-Daley then has to go off fifteen metres after touching the tapes resulting in the home side gaining a 5-1 to open up a six-point lead for the Kings with three heats remaining. Heat thirteen sees’ Luke Priest excluded leaving Davey as the lone Potter and he promptly delivers as he takes the chequered flag ahead of Hopwood after Bowen had fallen attempting to pass Davey resulting in a Potters 3-2 advantage with the Potters trailing 41-36.

Heat fourteen saw Thomas get the better of Atkin with Andrews taking third place for a 4-2 to the Kings and with the curfew at the Central Park track proceedings were brought to a halt with the Kings taking victory.

Potters team manager Malcolm Vasey commented “I am devastated that we did not get at least a point from this meeting tonight, a match we should have won and deserved to win, but no disrespect to Kent it was not their fault we were just unlucky and we wasted a few opportunities where we should of got an extra point or two and didn’t but the team tried so hard and we are all really disappointed that we have not got anything from the meeting. We felt have fallen behind we could engineer ourselves back into a winning position and things just did not go our way in the end.”

KENT 45: Jack Thomas 9+2, Nathan Stoneman 9, Luke Bowen 8, Ben Hopwood 8, Bradley Andrews 5, Anders Rowe 4+3, Luke Clifton 2+1
STOKE 38: Mitchell Davey 12, David Wallinger 9+1, Tony Atkin 8, Luke Priest 5, Ryan Terry-Daley 3+2, Shaun Tedham 1, David Speight 0