NATIONAL LEAGUE Mildenhall Fen Tigers 54 Kent Kings 39
Rob Henry declared himself a relieved man in light of the Mildenhall Fen Tigers’ win over the Kent Kings in the National League on Sunday.
Mildenhall manager Henry spoke of his delight after watching his side reel off four straight heat advantages in the concluding four heats to secure all three points, despite being without the injured duo of Josh Bates and Jack Kingston.
“I must admit to being a little worried when they pulled it back to only one point,” said Henry. “Without Josh and Jack we were a little stretched and I feared the worse, but the lads really pulled together and in the end won quite convincingly.”
The Kings showed they meant business from the outset with Simon Lambert storming to victory in the opening heat in a time just over two-tenths outside the track record.
In the next heat, the Fen Tigers’ Mountain led home reserve partner Jez Pestell — in for the absent Kingston — for the first 5-1 of the afternoon for the Fen Tigers.
After a 4-2 reverse in heat three when Halsey was excluded for a coming together with Ben Morley, it was back to the 5-1s again in heat four with Mountain and Connor Coles combining for maximum points.
The scores between the two sides remained tight until the Fen Tigers secured back-to-back 5-1s in heats eight and nine, enabling the Kings to use a tactical ride in heat 10.
Morley was handed the job of wearing the double-scoring black-and-white helmet and he did not disappoint, leading home a 7-2 to the Kings, a result which was backed up by a 5-1 in the next race to reduce the Fen Tigers’ lead down to a solitary point.
The Fen Tigers’ responded to the pressure applied on them, however, with three 5-1s and a 4-2 seeing them end the meeting as comfortable winners.
Although acknowledging the contributions made by the entire team, Henry was quick to commend the outstanding performances of three individuals.
“Danny Halsey put in another captains performance and I felt he was unlucky with the exclusion which stopped him from getting a six ride maximum,” said Henry.
“He has our track so well weighed up now few ride it better.
“The two Connors were excellent too, unfortunately Connor Coles blew another engine and it is proving an expensive time for him, but he rode well today and looked good around the circuit.
“Young Connor Mountain is really starting to progress now. He is impressive in everything he does and is always taking board advice.”
Mildenhall: Jacobs 7+3; Coles 10+1; Halsey 15; Johnson 7+2; Pestell 2+1; Mountain 13+1.
Kent: Lambert 10; Baseby 3+2; Morley 14; Chessell 4+1; Mason 4; Harris 1+1; Ayres 3.
n Twenty-four hours earlier, Fen Tigers saw their chances of winning this year’s National Trophy receive a dent after going down to the Stoke Potters.
Despite Joe Jacobs racing to an 18-point maximum it was not enough to prevent the Suffolk side from losing 54-39 to the Loomer Road side.
Stoke: Hopwood 12,; Armstrong 10+2; Wilson 10; Shuttleworth 9+3; Payne 7+3; Widman 6+1; McBain 0.
Mildenhall: Jacobs 18; Bates 9; Johnson 7+1; Mountain 4+1; Kingston 1+1; Coles 0; Halsey R/R.