Birmingham Monarchs went down to an agonising last race defeat at Ashmore Park on sunday after having control of the meeting right till the latter stages. An exclusion for Nathan Groves in that final race sealed victory for the home side.
The Monarchs were behind from the off conceding a maximum heat however good fortune smiled on the visitors in heat 3 with Winwood taking advantage of the Aces pairing who were out ridden by Chris Timms.
In between the run of drawn heats Birmingham took a 6-4 in heat 8, won by Millward whilst team partner Groves rode an excellent defensive race in 3rd.
2 points up going into the interval a further advantage in the 11th with an all action race seeing bike to bike clashes and a retirement for Aces rider Griffiths with several missing spokes. Winwood again coming out on top. Birmingham now 5 up (52-57)
2 more drawn heats maintained that advantage. Heat 14 saw the Aces hit back with a maximum of their own to put themselves right back in contention (69-70) and followed that with a 6-4 in the 15th to move one point ahead, only the 2nd time in the match since heat 2.
Millward reeled off his 3rd straight win in the 16th however Johnson was relegated to the back by some smart riding by the Aces duo that stopped the Monarchs moving ahead. When the Monarchs slipped to a further 6-4 against in the 17th it left Birmingham needing a maximum in the last race.
Groves lead the race and in trying to help his team mate took the chasing Aces rider onto the kerb and was excluded for giving no room to race. The Aces finished as they started with a maximum to secure the win.
The Monarchs can feel some pride in taking the reigning champions to a last heat decider and they will have known they were given a tough meeting.
MIDLAND LEAGUE DIVISION ONE
Wednesfield Aces 93 v BIRMINGHAM MONARCHS 85 – Ricki Johnson 15+2 (5), Scott Millward 15+1 (5), Mark Winwood 14 (5), Ewan Hancox 12+1 (5), Chris Timms 11+2 (5), Nathan Groves 8 (5), Steve Hodgkinson 7 (3), Paul Timms 5+1 (3).
In the 2nd Division meeting the Aces won comfortably. Ryan Winwood top scored with paid 15.
MIDLAND LEAGUE DIVISION 2
Wednesfield Aces 86 v BIRMINGHAM MONARCHS 56 (63- 7 Penalty points) – Ryan Winwood 14+1 (5), Jake Steel 12+1 (5), Connor Steel 9+1 (5), Billy Winwood 8 (5), Charlie Buet Gannon 8 (5), Phil Widdas 7 (3), Steve Hodgkinson 5+1 (2).
In the 3rd Division the mini Monarchs continued their winning ways , taking a 10 point win. Billy Winwood dropped a single point.
MIDLAND LEAGUE DIVISION THREE
Wednesfield Aces 70 v BIRMINGHAM MONARCHS 80 – Billy Winwood 17+2 (5), Connor Steel 16+1 (5), Rebekah Humphries 16 (5), Charlie Buet Gannon 13+3 (5), Ryan Winwood 14+2(5), Izzy Buet Gannon 5 (5).
Round 2 of the Nationals YJL came to East Park on Saturday. Connor Steel starred for the Monarchs taking 2nd place in the A final in the U12’s. Bekah Humphries also competed and came 4th in the C final. Both an improvement on round 1.
For the first time we had representation in all age categories. Ewan Hancox took a win in the B final of the U18’s with Jake Steel scoring 8 points. Ryan Winwood took victory in the D final of the U14’s
whilst Charlie Buet Gannon was 2nd in the C final of the U10’s. Newcomers Izzy Buet Gannon and Samuel Price took part in the U8’s scoring 4 and 5 respectively.
Veteran Monarchs travel to Newport Wales on Saturday for round 5 of the Eurovets series whilst at present the club are in discussions to host a challenge fixture this Sunday. Check our social media for updates.
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