Tigers duo join forces in style to take pairs plaudits

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SCENES of jubilation filled the terraces at Mildenhall Stadium on Sunday after Lewis Blackbird and Cameron Heeps tore apart their rivals to be crowned National League Pairs champions.

The Mildenhall Fen Tigers duo made full use of their extensive knowledge of the West Row track to hand the club their first piece of silverware for 2012 when taking the coveted title.

Things got off to the perfect start for them when slamming Isle of Wight pair Kyle Hughes and Danny Warwick in the afternoon’s opening heat.

A place in the final four was booked after the deadly duo’s second ride with Blackbird clinging on to a valuable victory ahead of Buxton Hitmen’s Charlie Wright, with Heeps taking third for a 6-3.

While everything was proving plain sailing for Mildenhall in Group A, things were looking equally as comfortable for the Scunthorpe pairing of Gary Irving and Tom Young, who put themselves at the head of affairs in Group B, after heat advantages over both representatives from King’s Lynn and Dudley.

Mildenhall confirmed their status as top dogs in Group A after making light work of Rye House’s Ben Morley and James Sarjeant for another 7-2.

Over in Group B, runaway leaders Scunthorpe breezed through as group winners, while the Dudley Heathens pairing of Tom Perry and Byron Bekker edged out King’s Lynn’s James Cockle and Lewis Kerr to go through as runners-up.

Having made the perfect start to the group stage, Blackbird and Heeps wasted no time in doing the same in the final.

Taking full advantage of an exclusion to Buxton’s Rob Branford, the pair grabbed an all-important 7-2 in the rerun.

One hand was firmly placed on the silverware in the Fen Tigers duo’s next outing with Irving and Young.

As Heeps raced away to his second win of the meeting, Blackbird looked to be on a loser after finding himself stuck at the back of the pack.

But the never-give-in attitude shone through in abundance with Blackbird passing Young on the penultimate lap to take an all-important third.

With Branford and Wright claiming a 6-3 win over Bekker and Perry, it left the Fen Tigers duo needing just a second place result to be crowned champions.

No one for doing things by half, Heeps — having been outgated — forced his way past Perry on the penultimate lap to register the heat win and more importantly the title.

“It really is happy days for everyone at the club,” said Blackbird. “Me and Cam ride really well together.

“We had a plan of action before the meeting that I would take the wide gates and Cam the inside and it has worked to perfection. I am now just buzzing with excitement.”

Chris Louis, co-promoter of the Mildenhall Fen Tigers, added: “I am really proud of both lads.

“They both worked out a system to attack the meeting and it worked.

“You could see early on they were going to win as they were listening hard and taking on the advice given to them, and did all the right things you need to do to be successful in a pairs event.

“We were graced with great weather and the track was superb for the conditions we had. The whole event was a great success and just showed what we are capable of putting on here at Mildenhall.”

Group A: Isle of Wight 11, Mildenhall 20, Rye House 6, Buxton 17.

Group B: Dudley 13, Scunthorpe 20, Stoke 9, King’s Lynn 12.

Final: Mildenhall 17, Buxton 14, Dudley 12, Scunthorpe 11.