Monday April 23, 2018
The “BP Mitchell” Rockets fell to their second heavy away defeat in as many matches this season in a 31-59 reverse at Belle Vue on Monday night.

The meeting did, however, mark an immediate return to form for Krzysztof Kasprzak, who struggled at Monmore Green but racked up 14+1 here as the Rockets’ mainstay. That total would have been more but for a two minute exclusion due to mechanical problems in Heat 12 and two subsequent outings in which the newly announced Warsaw Grand Prix Wildcard was denied victory on the very last lap by Rohan Tungate and teenage sensation Dan Bewley, whose back straight swoop in Heat 15 completed a sensational five ride maximum.

Despite the ultimately one-sided finish, the Rockets were very much in contention for the first half of the fixture, with a 5-1 by Scott Nicholls and Kasprzak – named to the race as a Tactical Substitute – pulling Rye to within four points, at 20-16, and the Pole and guest Nikolaj Busk Jacobsen sharing a 3-3 with winner Max Fricke in the next heat.

That was as close as it got, however, with the Aces hitting five 5-1s and two 4-2s across the eight remaining races to create a lopsided appearance to the final score. As Rye House Team Manager Peter Schroeck accepted afterwards, “It was a bit of a nightmare at the end. The boys were hanging in there, and there were some really good races, but they (the Aces) are so, so quick up here.

“K.K. did really well, but the others struggled with speed. It was not a question of effort or riding; everybody was trying really hard, but we just didn’t have the pace.”

“BP Mitchell” Rockets:
Krzysztof Kasprzak 14+1, Chris Harris 5+1, Scott Nicholls 5, Aaron Summers 3, Nicolaj Busk Jakobsen (guest) 2+1, Max Clegg 2, Edward Kennett R/R

Belle Vue:
Dan Bewley 13+2 (maximum), Max Fricke 11+2, Rohan Tungate 9+1, Craig Cook 9, Charles Wright 7+3, Jye Etheridge 6+1, Paul Starke 4+1.

From Monday night in Manchester, the focus for the “BP Mitchell” Rockets now rapidly shifts to Wednesday’s home encounter against Wolverhampton. With their last Hoddesdon fixture abandoned in the rain and mist after just eight races, Wednesday effectively marks the start of Rye’s 2018 home programme, and they will head into it without both Edward Kennett (knee) and Stuart Robson (broken finger). Rider-Replacement will once again be in operation for Kennett, with Krzystztof Kasprzak, Aaron Summers and the Rockets’ two reserves eligible for replacement outings, and Rye House asset Nikolaj Busk Jakobsen once again stepping in as a reserve guest for the side-lined Robson.

The Wolves, meanwhile, will field the same septet that took out the Hertfordshire club 60-30 at Monmore Green last Monday. Jacob Thorsell and 2015 British U-21 Champion Kyle Howarth were both unbeaten in that fixture, and will be joined by double League Riders’ Champion Rory Schlein (who went through the card tonight in a 54-36 victory over Poole), 2017 Aussie titlist Sam Masters and 2016 Rocket Cameron Heeps in the main body of their team. The reserve slots belong to former British Youth Champions Nathan Greaves and Ashley Morris.

Team Manager Peter Schroeck sees this as the meeting to get the Rockets’ campaign right back on track. “Wolverhampton and Belle Vue were tough places to go to, but we are only two matches into the season. Wednesday is another day, and it is up to us to hit the ground running, make some starts and attack them from the off.

“We’ll know more about the situation on Eddie (Kennett) in the next day or so. At this stage, we know he’s automatically ruled out for Wednesday, and he may well miss next Monday’s match at Leicester as well.

“That obviously leaves a gap against Wolverhampton because we all know how strong Eddie is around Rye House, but we will look to make up for it in other areas. We’ll work as a team, and fight as a team, to properly kick our season into gear.”

Wednesday’s SGB Premiership action starts at 7.30pm.

“BP Mitchell” Rockets:
Max Clegg, Chris Harris, Nikolaj Busk Jakobsen (guest), Krzysztof Kasprzak, Edward Kennett R/R, Scott Nicholls (captain), Aaron Summers

Nathan Greaves, Cameron Heeps, Kyle Howarth, Sam Masters, Ashley Morris, Rory Schlein (captain), Jacob Thorssell

In addition to Wednesday’s main event, the meeting will also feature six Rocketeers races at 125cc and 250cc level.


Adults £18, Seniors (over 60s) £16, Registered Disabled £12 (Accompanying Carer £12), Full-Time Students (17-22) £6, Children (aged 12-16) £6, Children (under 12) FREE. Match programme: £2.

Please note that those seeking Student admission must provide a copy of their current student photo ID (issued by the NUS or their university/college) at the turnstiles.