match report:by Neil Magee
Sunday 31st May
Northern League Division 2
The meeting started with a rare couple of 5-4's, Paul Thompson falling in heat 1 for Northumbria, Colin Gray then coming a cropper after a bold attempt to pass Andy Knowles in heat 2. Glasgow took the lead with a 7-3 in heat 4, Joe Beuckmann and Gray taking a max in that race. Andy McDougal then held off Dan Wharrier who had to ride a canny race in heat 5, with Shane Lawton always in contention, the home side extending their lead to 27-21. Northumbria hit back in the next as Keith Oldham and Dan Redshaw cruised to a 7-3, before Andy Knowles rode brilliantly in heat 7 to pass Lawton in a three times ran race. Wharrier headed Andy McDougal, with Neil Magee ahead of Gray to take the teams into the interval level at 39-39 after 8 races.
Liam Robinson was excluded for moving at the start of heat 9, leaving Oldham on his own, he winning the race, but Glasgow edging back in front with the resulting 5-4. The next battle in heat 10 proved crucial, Redshaw racing hard with Andy McDouglal with the home man dropping it on turn two, just as Knowles sped inside for a 7-3 to the visitors. Wharrier and Magee then took another 4-2 in the next as Northumbria began to take command, Dan Thompson recovering to chase hard for a vital third place in heat 13 to put his team now up by 5 points. That left Magee and Oldham to gate and team ride in the penultimate heat to seal the win, Robinson following by redeeming himself with a good final ride as he took third with an outside pass in the last race, giving his team an 11 point advantage in the finish.
GLASGOW: Andy McDougal 16, Joe Beuckman 15, Shane Lawton 13+1, Jim Alexander 10+2, Lachlan McDougal 7+1, Colin Gray 7+1
NORTHUMBRIA:Dan Wharrier 15, Dan Redshaw 14+1, Andy Knowles 13+2, Keith Oldham 12+1, Neil Magee 12, Dan Thompson 7, Liam Robinson 4, Paul Thompson 2
Dan Thompson rode well to lead his team to the win, with a victory in heat 5, before leading the finale for almost 4 laps, Euan Tulloch just finding a way past with a great move on the last bend, his team mate however in position behind to secure the win. Paul Thompson and Liam Robinson both looked much quicker on a drier track that they were by now more familiar with, in an enjoyable finish to the days racing. Northumbria CSC would like to thank all riders who took part to give everyone a worthwhile end to the days racing, especially main match referee Euan Tulloch and the Hull contingent, including a very impressive and unbeaten Nathan Everett, as well as of course to Chic Mackie and the Glasgow club for staging an excellent show throughout.
NORTHUMBRIA: Dan Thompson 11+2, Dan Redshaw 9, David Cooper (guest) 6+1, Liam Robinson 5+1, Neil Magee 5+1
SELECT: Nathan Everett 8, Euan Tulloch 8, Dan Wharrier 8, Paul Thompson 7+1, Katie Greaves 3
I don't have much to add to Neil's story other than to congratulate all THREE teams on a great day's racing. Really enjoyed spectating at this one, although my bones still haven't thawed out, that dreadful freezing wind the cause of day-long discomfort. First I'd like to thank Chic and also the ladies for their superb provision of after-match rations for the troops, standing there bravely in dreadfully cold and blustery conditions throughout.
Although we fully expected our top two Dans to lead the way, there were a couple of other performances that stood out for me and therefore influenced my decision to award my personal "Man of the Match" equally to Keith Oldham and the incredible, long-travelling Andy Knowles. Here's Keith guarding Neil from the attentions of Jim Alexander:
They both rode their hearts out and just for once Andy hardly hampered his scoring by overdoing the team riding this time (with a little help from the Referee's warning!) and the result was a super score for our travelling (Sheffield) Star. Below: Andy does his usual great covering job behind teammate Daniel Thompson while Colin Gray looks for a possible gap in their defences:
Must also mention Neil himself as he continues to steadily get quicker, particlularly away from the tapes, and recover some of that lost confidence.
Our new Club transport (Terry's Fiat Scudo being a replacement for the sadly departed Renault Scenic) proved to be a superb travelling clubhouse and when the tank is topped up we'll discover how expensive it will be!
Watching emerging talent is always good and here I have to echo what Neil said about young Humbersider Nathan Everett, what a great young rider this lad is and I'm sure with the influence of his teammate,multi-British Champion Andy Angell he will be a force to be reckoned with soon. He and his other teammate David Cooper join Sheffield's Kyle Holland on our "most wanted" list! Glasgow meanwhile are like ourselves struggling to find an influx of youngsters and having to rely largely on returnees but their committmernt is first class, and heads up to Joe who gamely rode two matches with that smashed wrist.