IT was a battling performance from the Belle Vue ‘Cool Running’ Colts in Scotland, but it wasn’t enough to prevent a 50-40 defeat against the Edinburgh Monarchs Academy.
Conditions at the Armadale Stadium were tricky on the night, following heavy downpours earlier in the day and forced a delayed start to the meeting while track work was carried out.
The Manchester side then found themselves on the backfoot almost immediately following the withdrawal of Luke Muff from the meeting after crashing out in Heat 1.
Thankfully his injuries were superficial, but with medics ruling him out it meant a busy night for Paul Bowen and Freddy Hodder, who covered Muff’s rides through the Injury Rider Replacement rule.
Yet despite the setback, the Cool Running Colts put in a commendable performance and certainly kept the pressure on their Scottish rivals throughout the evening.
Just when it appeared the Academy boys had leverage over Belle Vue, the visitors responded with several heat advantages to maintain the deficit at 10 points.
Skipper Jack Smith topped the score charts with 9 points while Freddy Hodder recorded 8+2 from a full seven-ride quota, and Sam Hagon and Paul Bowen added 7.
Colts co-boss Graham Goodwin said: “Given the amount of rain that had come down, we weren’t sure if the meeting would go ahead, but the track staff worked very hard to get it on.
“Full credit also must be given to all 14 riders. They were more than aware of the tricky conditions, and their collective attitude was, ‘we’re all here so we might as well give it a go’.
“It was quite slimy in the early heats, which is where it unfortunately caught Luke out; he caught Jack’s back wheel which sent him into the fence.
“He’s got a bit of a stiff neck and shoulder pain and he felt he was ok to continue but the medics ruled him out of the meeting, but the main thing is he should be ok with no lasting effects.
“We couldn’t be more pleased with the boys for how they all dug in and battled to the end. We were at a disadvantage with just 6 riders, but they did a brilliant job in difficult conditions.”
It’s another busy week for the club next week with two more away fixtures in the Premiership coming on April 17 and 20 against Peterborough and Leicester respectively.
Then, the ATPI Aces continue their Premiership pursuits at the National Speedway Stadium on Monday, April 24 with a visit from the Peterborough Panthers.
Meeting tickets, race day hospitality and south stand parking are now available to pre-book at bellevue-speedway.com.
RESULT – EDINBURGH V BELLE VUE – FRIDAY, APRIL 14 @ 7:30PM [NDL]
Edinburgh ‘Stellar’ Monarchs Academy 50: Kyle Bickley 14, Adam Roynon 12, Jacob Hook 11+2, Alex Spooner 6+1, Kyran Lyden 4+1, Mickie Simpson 3, Dayle Wood 0
Belle Vue ‘Cool Running’ Colts 40: Jack Smith 9, Freddy Hodder 8+2, Sam Hagon 7, Paul Bowen 7, Matt Marson 6+2, James Pearson 3, Luke Muff 0
League Points: Edinburgh 2 Belle Vue 0