Saturday April 15, 2017
A faultless five ride maximum from Edward Kennett proved pivotal as the BMR Rockets bounced back from their Cup exit to outflank King’s Lynn 50-42 in the first local derby between the two sides since 2010.

The Rye House captain’s full house was not only instrumental; it also anchored the Rockets at key stages in the match. Team Manager Peter Shroeck had called beforehand for a quick start from his side, but even he couldn’t have expected the explosive opening he would receive in return, as Kennett and Stuart Robson outpaced 2012 World Champion Chris Holder and the otherwise impressive Lewis Rose for a 5-1 in Heat 1. Further maximums from the combinations of Rob Branford-Ellis perks (Heat 2) and Scott Nicholls-Perks (Heat 4) swiftly followed to elevate the score to 18-16, and Chris Harris then saw off Holders’ challenge as a double pointed TR prior to Kennett’s next appearance to head home ex-Rocket Robert Lambert in Heat 6 which took Rye to a commanding 25-13 advantage.

Game over? No, as the Stars then roared back into contention to pull back to 30-26 within the next three stanzas, before Kennett steadied the ship by taking Heat 10. With Robson third behind Nicklas Porsing and ahead of Troy Batchelor, the Rockets regained a 6 point cushion again, and one which they never surrendered.

Another 4-2 from Kennett and Scott Nicholls followed in a high octane Heat 13 against the League’s official best pair of Holder and Lambert to lift the score to 44-36, and after Perks and Branford had clinched the victory by following home Batchelor in the next race, the Rye House No.1 set the seal on this club’s A10 bragging rights by taking the finale to blank out any hopes the Stars had of a consolation match point.

Harris was a faller in that final race, but otherwise contributed 10 points, with Nicholls adding 8 and Robson further important top end back-up with 6+1. It proved another difficult night for Davey Watt, who failed to score and also crashed out of Heat 9 when desperately holding off Lambert for second place, and also for Rob Branford, whose Heat 2 victory was balanced by a later fall and a frustrating Heat 7 exclusion for exceeding the two minute time allowance for wearing the wrong helmet colour.

Fortunately for Rye, those negatives were compensated for by another sensational performance by Ellis Perks. The newly qualified British U-21 Finalist blasted paid 10, watched on by proud father and former referee Robbie Perks, who is visiting from Australia for the next few weeks and who must have found the trek already worthwhile.

The final word, however, belonged to Edward Kennett, who looked back afterwards on what had been a match that had ebbed and flowed before ultimately proving uplifting experience for the Rockets.

“It’s always tough, everyone enjoys coming to Rye House and seems to ride it well, but after Swindon, we had a little chat and put that one behind us in order to move on with the League. That’s the one that’s really important, not just to the Team and myself, but to the promotion and the fans.

“We built such a large advantage early on before they came back at us, and then we pulled away again in the crucial heats like Heat 13. It’s obviously nice to finish on a high and get all the points.

“We pushed hard tonight, and my form is back on track. I’m only riding once a week, and this is only the fourth meeting I have done this year – but I am enjoying it. I’m enjoying riding the bike, and winning races has given me a big confidence boost.

“There was another massive crowd tonight, and what can I say? It’s brilliant, and hopefully they’ll all come back again next week. We try to put on the best show that we can, and winning at home is obviously a major thing as well.

“We’re already looking forward to Poole coming to town (on Saturday the 22nd). Every meeting is big, but there is no reason why we can’t do what we did tonight.”

BMR Rockets:
Edward Kennett 15 (5 rides, max), Chris Harris 10 (5), Scott Nicholls 8 (4), Ellis Perks 7+3 (5), Stuart Robson 6+1 (4), Rob Branford 4+1 (5), Davey Watt 0 (3)

King’s Lynn:
Nicklas Porsing 10+2 (5 rides), Troy Batchelor 9+1 (5), Chris Holder 8+1 (4 rides, inc 4 as a TR), Lewis Rose 6+1 (4), Robert Lambert 6 (4), Kai Huckenbeck 3 (5), Josh Bailey 0 (3)

Match Points: Rye House 3 King’s Lynn 0