Monday August 28, 2017
The BMR Rockets took another major step towards securing a place in the SGB Championship Play-Offs as they calmly dismantled chief contenders Poole 56-35 in front of a big energy-driven crowd and the cameras of BT Sport.

The victory – a near mirror image of the Rockets’ 60-30 demolition job at Wimborne Road earlier this month – keeps them within four match points of the Pirates, with two matches in hand. The deficit will be down to a single point if Rye can achieve the right result at home to local derby rivals King’s Lynn tomorrow night (Tuesday).

The Rockets always looked in command after an opening race 5-1 from Chris Harris and Ben Barker over Brady Kurtz and Jack Holder, and would have doubled their advantage within four more laps had not Timo Lahti re-passed Ben Morley on the last bend to claim second spot behind Stuart Robson in Heat 2. Either way, the Hertfordshire side extended its lead to 20-10 after five races, and then saw off the Pirates’ Tactical gamble when Barker surged inside former Grand Prix star Hans Andersen in a breath-taking manoeuvre in Heat 6 to take the race victory and force a 4-4.

Poole briefly threatened to steal a consolation match point when Lahti and Andersen hit a 5-1 in one of only two visiting race wins in Heat 9. That pulled the score back to 32-24, but a 5-0 from Scott Nicholls and Robson in Heat 11, after both Kurtz and Holder had fallen in separate incidents, effectively put the seal on the encounter with a full four races to run.

Chris Harris finished the night with 12+1, followed home by the re-energised Ricky Wells on 11 and the evergreen Stuart Robson with paid 10. It was Ben Barker, however, who perhaps turned most heads with an explosive 7+1 that included THAT race against Hans Andersen in Heat 6. Talking afterwards, the Truronian said, “We took control early on, and we also finished it. We know we’re still not there yet; we’ve still got work to do over the next week, but we are absolutely buzzing tonight and ready to move on to tomorrow (against King’s Lynn).

“Points or otherwise, that was my best performance for the side so far. I made that nice pass on Hans (Andersen), and it’s good when you know you are passing world-class guys.

“There have been meetings here before where I felt like I was chasing the match, but it really worked for me from the off tonight. That’s what I wanted to happen; I’m not worried about my last place in my final race because I hit the ground running to begin with.”

BMR Rockets:
Chris Harris 12+1 (5 rides), Ricky Wells 11 (5), Scott Nicholls 9 (4), Stuart Robson 8+2 (5), Ben Barker 7+1 (4), Krzysztof Kasprzak 7 (4), Ben Morley 2 (4)

Hans Andersen 11+1 (5 rides, inc 4 as a TR), Timo Lahti 7 (5), Edward Kennett 6+1 (5), Jack Holder 4 (4), Brady Kurtz 3+1 (4), James Shanes 2+1 (4), Paul Starke 2 (3)

Match Points: Rye House 3 Poole 0

Next up for the Rockets, then, is another huge fixture tomorrow night (Tuesday) at home to A10 adversaries King’s Lynn. Says Barker ahead of the meeting, “If we can get the three points, then it’s REALLY close and we’ll be in touching distance. We all believe we can complete the job and make the Play-Offs, and then we’ll go again from there.

“I’m really looking forward to tomorrow night against King’s Lynn – in fact I’m looking forward to all my remaining matches. I’m loving being a Rocket, so it’s all systems go from here.”

BMR Rockets:
Ben Barker, Chris Harris, Krzysztof Kasprzak, Ben Morley, Scott Nicholls (captain), Stuart Robson, Ricky Wells
King’s Lynn:
Josh Auty, Kai Huckenbeck, Tomas H. Jonasson, Thomas Jorgensen, Robert Lambert (captain), Simon Lambert, Michael Palm Toft

Tuesday night’s admission at Rye House: Adults £18, Seniors (over 60s) £16, Full Time Students (17-22) £10, Children (12-16) £6, Children (under 12) Free. Match Programme £2.00.

Start time: 7.30 prompt!