Warriors in fine form to beat Young Lions

Action from the match. Picture: Ian Groves
Action from the match. Picture: Ian Groves
Portsmouth Duathlon Series champion Piotr Meller. Picture: Neil Marshall

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Henry Parry competiting in the Kitzb�hel ETU Triathlon European Championships 2017. Picture: Horst Viertbauer

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AN IMPRESSIVE show from Wightlink Warriors saw them record their biggest win of the season.

The Isle of Wight team turned on the style to beat the Great Britain Young Lions 56-34 at the Andrew Younie Smallbrook Stadium.

Husband and wife team managers Neil and Jackie Vatcher were in opposition and the honours went to Jackie and the home team.

Returning home number one Ben Wilson raced to an untroubled 12-point maximum after a tricky start to heat 13.

He received strong backing from his team-mates as well as they all showed some excellent form.

Co-promoter Barry Bishop was absolutely delighted with the performance from the Isle of Wight team.

He was quick to praise his riders and felt they produced a high-quality display that certainly impressed the home crowd.

He said: ‘Both on and off track, we were cohesive and effective.

‘The riders and mechanics worked together magnificently and while I am reluctant to single any one person out I have to say our new boy at reserve, Adam Portwood, went really well despite some mechanical issues that the rest of the team helped to cure.

‘It was also great to have Ben back and on top form, giving us a real boost right from heat one.’

The Young Lions were forced to make a couple of late alterations and tracked a team of riders all aged 17 or under.

As expected, Jack Parkinson-Blackburn was the pick of the visitors with up-and-coming rider Kyle Bickley also impressing and never off the pace.

Team manager Neil Vatcher was philosophical as he reflected on the meeting.

It was a good opportunity for his team and they were delighted with their form.

He said: ‘This was a really young squad and they will all benefit from track time in proper meetings like this.

‘The big circuit here on the island creates another learning environment and you could see lessons were being learned as the meeting progressed.

‘Well done Warriors, the better team won on the night.’

Next for the Warriors will be in the Cobra Garage Mahal Best Pairs at the Andrew Younie Smallbrook stadium on Thursday.

Warriors scores: Ben Wilson 12, Chris Widman 7+1, James Cockle 12, Scott Campos 7+2, Connor Coles 10+1, Jamie Sealey 2, Adam Portwood 6

GB Young Lions: Jack Parkinson-Blackburn 10, Luke Woodhull 2+1, Joe Lawlor 6+1, Matt Marson 4, Kyle Bickley 9+1, Ben Woodhull 3+1, Jamie Bursill 0

– ROB DYER