Key:  + = from 15m handicap,  * = Tactical ride for double points
Stoke Easy-Rider Potters v SHEFFIELD WINDOW CENTRE Tigers Premier LeagueAug. 1

Ref: Graham Flint

1. Jason Bunyan 8.97 3 2 3 1 2' 11+1
2. Jesper Kristiansen 5.16 1 1' 1 2' 5+2
3. Klaus Jakobsen 6.00 r ef x 1' 1+1
4. Lee Complin © 7.51 2 2 3 3 3 13
5. Robert Ksiezak 5.31 3 1 1 3 8
6. Craig Branney 3.94 1' r f/r - 1+1
7. Tom P. Madsen 4.75 2 r f/r 2 2' 6+1
 John Woolridge 4 3 2 3 2 3 1 1 3 5 1 3 4 5 5

Stoke Potters

4 7 9 12 14 17 18 19 22 27 28 31 35 40 45
Sheffield Tigers 2 5 9 12 16 19 24 29 31 32 37 40 42 43 44
Eric Boocock 2 3 4 3 4 3 5 5 2 1 5 3 2 1 1
1. David Howe (g) 8.19 2 3 3 2 1 11
2. Chris Mills 5.15 ef 1 2' 2' 5+2
3. Joel Parsons 5.51 1 2' 1 x2 4+1
4. Richard Hall 7.37 3 3 fx f/r 0 6
5. Josh Auty 5.98 1' 3 f ef 4+1
6. Hugh Skidmore 5.00 r f 2 fx 2
7. Paul Cooper 5.15 3 2 3 3 +1 12
Track Record: 60.6
L. Complin, 8 Sept '07
0102030405060708091011121314 15
66.170.8 66.867.463.2 65.365.567.1awd62.4 61.3

After two rain-offs and no meeting on the day of the Premier Fours they were desperate to get this meeting run despite several days of heavy rain. The track was sodden but the same for both teams. Chris Mills bike packed in on the parade lap and he only just made the 2 minute allowance and then promptly broke down at the starting gate. Jason Bunyan took a trip to the fence at the end of the third lap but just held on to win. Paul Cooper looked calm and collected on his way to winning heat 2 but young Hugh Skidmore was all over the track and eventually retired from last place on the third lap. The Tigers trap ahead in heat 3 but Lee Complin catches and passes Joel on the second turn of lap three and very nearly did the same to Richard at the start of the last lap. Robert Ksiezak made the gate in his debut ride as a Potter in heat 4 and did just enough to stay ahead of Paul, while Tom P. Madsen did not like the conditions and retired from last place. David Howe took the lead down the back straight in heat 5 and outpaced Lee while Chris was gifted a point when Klaus Jakobsen stopped on the third lap. The Tigers open up a slender two point lead.

Hugh tumbled off on the second bend of heat 6 but jumped back on. Josh passed Jesper Kristiansen at the start of the second lap and resisted pressure from Jason Bunyan but Hugh fell again on the pits turn on the third lap. Richard and Joel make no mistake winning heat 7 to put the Tigers into a six point lead. The Potters gate ahead in heat 8 but Jesper slewed across the second bend and Tom  fell allowing Paul and Chris another maximum heat win. Josh Auty lead the way in heat 9 and Hugh audaciously passes Lee out of the second bend. Lee battles back into second place at the end of the first lap and sets off after Josh who falls heavily on the third lap when his rear wheel collapsed! Joel passed Jason to lead heat 10 and Richard rounded Jesper Kristiansen on the third bend to leave us sitting pretty but Richard wants more glory and despite track conditions tries to blast around Jason and falls on the pits bend on the second lap. Jesper goes straight on and stuffs Joel under the fence in the restart, and then Joel loses second place in the third attempt when he sheds a chain on the last lap. The Tigers lead has been trimmed from ten points to five.

David traps to win heat 11 and Chris passes Robert out of turn two to get the Tigers back into the driving seat. The terrace team managers are all poised ready to write Paul Coopers name in as reserve replacement for Hugh in heat 12 but nothing is announced, and it is only when Joel fails to beat the two minute allowance we begin to see the reason why. Hugh falls on the second lap but Paul makes yet another blinding start to share the heat and maintain the Tigers lead. Robert traps to lead heat 13 but David and Jason are right on his tail and the win could have gone to any of them. With the two minute allowance ticking away for heat 14 Paul returns to the pit gate for some kind of adjustment and finds himself off 15 metres. We only need two points to secure the win but Richard doesn't even make it as far as the back straight before tumbling off, and Paul has too much to make up from his handicap in the rerun.

Jason and Lee are the obvious heat 15 nominations for the Potters. The terrace team managers have a harder decision to make. Top scorer Paul is the obvious choice. Hugh is out of the equation as he's only finished one race and he was last in that. Josh hasn't finished in either of his last two rides, and Richard has fallen in both of his. Joel appears to have picked up an injury, and Chris isn't likely to trouble the Stoke pair. It's asking a lot of a guest to save us the match in the nominated heat but that was the consensus on the terraces. We could hardly believe it when Richard was selected in preference to Paul, especially when he emerges from the pits on a machine which has obviously not been warmed up and spitting flames from its exhaust. We stood in silence as the Potters sped from the tapes and the home supporters celebrated their almost unbelievable win.

It's very easy to be critical from the terraces especially when luck seems to have completely deserted you. Our team management appeared inept. That word seems to have upset someone and has sparked a tirade against the on-line community. Perhaps if we were ever made aware of what was happening in the pits we might better understand.

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