Isle of Wight speedway team Wightlink Warriors can't stop Kent Kings being crowned champions
A battling display from the Wight Wightlink Warriors was not enough to stop Kent Kings being crowned National Trophy winners.
Needing to win on the night by seven points or more, the Isle of Wight speedway team came up well short of their target, writes Rob Dyer.
The home side took a comprehensive victory and with it their first piece of national silverware.
After the meeting Warriors co-promoter Barry Bishop was in a bit of shock at the score.
He said: ‘That was a huge disappointment. I really thought we could unsettle the Kings but we needed to do well in the first few heats and when we didn’t we struggled badly.
‘Let’s be perfectly honest the best team won on the night and we say well done to the Kings as they take the limelight. More importantly for us, we need to regroup and prepare well for Plymouth at home when crucial league points will be at stake.’
It was always going to be a tough task against one of the National League’s more favoured sides.
But in the same way as the Warriors hit the Kings hard at the start of last Thursday’s meeting at Smallbrook, the home side reversed the roles and built up a 21-point lead after eight races and barring a major catastrophe had one hand on the trophy.
With those first eight heat winners coming from the Kings creating seven heat advantages, it took a Warriors tactical substitute in the shape of Georgie Wood and skipper Ben Morley to halt the home team’s dominance in heat nine.
So it was a frustrating night for all the Warriors, none more so than Wood who was on the wrong end of an opening heat 5-1, suffered an unexplained engine failure in his second ride, won his next two in style before grinding to a halt in heat 15 just after passing the Kings’ star-man Drew Kemp.
The Wightlink Warriors will hope for plenty of home support when they face Plymouth on Tuesday, June 11 in the National League.