Scorpions back on winning track
SCUNTHORPE SCORPIONS 50 NEWCASTLE DIAMONDS 40 (CHAMPIONSHIP)
HENDERSON INSURANCE Scunthorpe Scorpions maintained their 100% home record in 2018, with a hard-fought 50-40 victory over Newcastle Diamonds in a Championship league match at the Eddie Wright Raceway last night (Friday).
Scorpions are currently three men down due to injury, but their remaining riders, plus guests Kyle Howarth and Todd Kurtz, put in a great performance against Diamonds, who may not have the best record at the EWR, but currently have a side with a number of riders who are very capable around the track.
Diamonds took an early 8-4 lead, but four successive heat advantages took Scorpions 22-14 clear.
That run of successes for Scorpions included a brilliant Heat 5, in which both Jake Allen and Josh Auty missed the start, but picked off Stuart Robson and Ludvig Lindgren for a 5-1, which Auty making the final move on Lindgren coming out of the final corner.
But Diamonds were still not finished and pulled back to just two points behind after 11 races.
Both Auty and Kurtz passed Diamonds’ new signing Matej Kus early on in Heat 12, while the race lasted five laps, but as per the regulations, the referee called the result over four laps. The result was the same – a 5-1 that moved Scorpions into 39-33 ahead.
Jason Garrity and Howarth battled through for a 3-3 in Heat 13, while Allen secured the win for Scorpions by passing both Ashley Morris and Carl Wilkinson in fine style in Heat 14.
Newcastle played their full part in proceedings and were unlucky not to take a point for their efforts, when Tero Aarnio pulled out with what appeared a puncture while leading Heat 15.
Allen top-scored for Scorpions with 16+1, while Garrity (11) – returning after aggravating his arm injury at Glasgow – and Auty (10+2) both also scoring double figures. Guests Howarth (7+1) and Kurtz (6+2) picked up important points during the night.
Stand-in skipper Jason Garrity said: “Newcastle gave us a tough meeting, but we put in a good team performance and we won. That’s what it’s all about, winning the meeting and taking all the points available – it doesn’t really matter how much we win by.
“My arm is now a lot better. By my last ride, it was feeling a bit sore, but I wasn’t going to let it beat me.
“I’m a man of my word, and when I signed my contract with Scunthorpe, I committed to ride in as many meetings as I could. I probably shouldn’t have done Glasgow last week, but I am dedicated to this club.
“I can’t thank (Scunthorpe promoter) Rob Godfrey enough – he’s an inspiration to the sport He gives us this track to race around – I love it – plus he’s put together a great side. We can win silverware this year – when we do, that’s when I’ll be really happy.”
SCUNTHORPE 50: Jake Allen 16+1, Jason Garrity 11, Josh Auty 10+2, Kyle Howarth 7+1, Todd Kurtz 6+2, Danny Phillips 0, Stefan Nielsen r/r
NEWCASTLE 40: Tero Aarnio 9, Matej Kus 8+1, Stuart Robson 7, Ashley Morris 6, Carl Wilkinson 4+2, Ludvig Lindgren 3+1, Matthew Wethers 3
* BOTH Jason Garrity and Josh Auty will feature in the British Final at Belle Vue on Monday evening, with a place in the British Grand Prix at Cardiff’s Millennium Stadium up for grabs.