|Rye House "Rockets' v Sheffield PIRTEK 'Tigers'||Premier League||25th March|
|Rye House "Rockets'||5||10||15||18||22||24||26||29||32||34||38||43||46||51||53|
|André Compton ©||8.48||1'||3||*6||0||3||13+1|
|Track record: 55.8|
Chris Harris, 19 June '04
It might be spring, but in Hoddesdon it felt like the depths of winter. The Rockets sped to a twelve point lead with three maximum heat wins before the Tigers came to terms with the greasy wet track. Jamie Courtney took Ricky wide on the second turn to follow Stuart Robson home in the first heat and Steve Boxall passed both Paul and Benji on the back straight in heat 2 to join Luke Bowen at the front. Emiliano Sanchez was passed by Ed Kennett in heat 3 and then made a big mistake causing Kyle to clip his back wheel and fall. Steve Boxall led heat 4 from Benji but the race was awarded when Chris Neath fell trying to make the pass. Ed Kennett won heat 5 with Tommy Allen moving from last to second before Ricky re passed him on the last lap.
Fourteen points behind and the recovery begins. André beat Stuart Robson to win heat 6 with Paul Cooper passing Jamie Courtney for our first heat advantage. Emiliano trapped to lead Luke Bowen home with Chris Neath retiring at the back in heat 7. Ben Wilson made it three Sheffield winners on the trot in heat 8 and we were set for a 1-5 until Benji overcooked it lying second! André was wearing black & white as he took the chequered flag in heat 9 and the Rockets lead was reduced to just five points after Emiliano made it five consecutive race winners in heat 10. Stuart Robson left it late just pipping Kyle on the run to the finish line.
Ricky was excluded from heat 11 for skittling Luke Bowen who had just passed him. Chris Neath managed all four laps for the first time in the rerun but Luke Bowen was a faller again while dicing with Ben for second place, although he jumped back on for the odd point. The Rockets supporters breathed a little more easily after Edward Kennett and Steve Boxall took a maximum in heat 12 ahead of Paul and Emiliano. Ricky won heat 13 but André couldn't do anything to catch Stuart Robson and Chris Neath and the heat was shared. In heat 14 Luke Bowen drifted Kyle right out allowing Tommy Allen through for a 5-1, and André and Ricky were poised to return the favour in heat 15 until Ed Kennett battled though into second place.
Sheffield fought their way back into contention on a track which has been their downfall for the last couple of seasons and should be confident about taking the bonus for the aggregate win. They do need to stop giving teams a three race start though!
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