Monday April 16, 2018
It proved a disappointing start for the “BP Mitchell” Rockets when they finally got their 2018 season underway at Wolverhampton on Monday.

With race wins and heat advantages at a premium – they managed just three victories and two 4-2s – the Rockets were always going to find the going tough at the home of last year’s SGB Premiership runners-up, and ultimately went down 60-30.

It might conceivably have been a different story had Chris Harris been able to hold off Jacob Thorssell and Kyle Howarth in the opening race and former Wolf Max Clegg not fallen when desperately holding off Ashley Morris and Nathan Greaves behind winner Stuart Robson in the next stanza, but the Midlanders were clearly not in a generous mood, and immediately followed up with a 4-2 and 5-1 from the next two races, to take the match out of Rye’s reach at 17-7.

Harris and Krzysztof Kasprzak both subsequently managed wins for the Hertfordshire side, but an ultra-strong finish from the Wolves of no less than seven heat advantages (three maximums and four 4-2s) from the final eight races gave the final score its lopsided appearance, with falls for Edward Kennett and Stuart Robson (who also suffered a tapes exclusion), plus the inevitable rain thrown in for good measure.

Rye House Team Manager Peter Schroeck admitted afterwards that, “You have to give it to them. They out-foxed us big time today.

“The track was very slick, and we didn’t make the starts, but that’s not an excuse. Scott (Nicholls) and Bomber (Chris Harris) both generally had tough nights, and K.K. (Krzystof Kasprzak) too – and when your three heat leaders are not getting the points, you know you’re going to be in trouble.

“While it was obviously disappointing overall, we can still take a few positives from tonight. Aaron had a good meeting, and Eddie (Kennett) worked really hard and deserved to get into Heat 15. It was just unfortunate that he effectively got stuck in too much in that final race.

“You’ve got to remember, though, that it is a long season, and this was only match No.1. What really matters at this stage is that we bounce back with a better performance at Belle Vue (next Monday), and also that we get revenge when Wolverhampton come to our place (next Wednesday, the 25th).”

“BP Mitchell” Rockets:

Edward Kennett 6, Scott Nicholls 6, Aaron Summers 5+1, Chris Harris 5, Krzysztof Kasprzak 5, Stuart Robson 3, Max Clegg 0.


Jacob Thorssell 15 (maximum), Kyle Howarth 11+4 (maximum), Rory Schlein 11, Sam Masters 10+1, Ashley Morris 8+1, Cameron Heeps 3, Nathan Greaves 2+1.

Match Points: Wolverhampton 3 Rye House 0