Match Report by Neil Magee
Northern League Div 1
As expected Edinburgh continued on their title challenge with a resounding win. The margin could have been more but for Kamil Greszla having a nightmare at the starts, twice being excluded after big jumps at the tapes, while Craig Newsome also had to sit out a ride after falling and being excluded following a strong inside pass from home maximum man Gavin Parr. Jake Slight and Marcin Czarkowski took the opportunity to rack up big scores against a slight depleted home side, Mikey Hewitson unbeaten after his opening ride when he had to give second best to Parr.
NORTHUMBRIA: Gavin Parr 20, Jason Keith 15, Michael Parr 12, Terry Kirkup 7, Shane Gray 7, Andy Knowles 6, Dan Thompson 5, Paul Thompson 4
EDINBURGH: Mikey Hewitson 16+3, Jake Slight 16+2, Marcin Czarkowski 15+1, Neil Swanson 12+2, Lee Lawrence 12+2, Craig Newsome 12, Gavin Kennedy 10, Kamil Greszla 8+2
Northern League Div 2
With three riders going through the card unbeaten, it was pretty much one way traffic as Edinburgh set about also taking the Div 2 points home. Gavin Kennedy, Kieran Swanson and Ewan Kennedy never saw a home back wheel, with Lewis Foxley following on from his maximum last time out against Heckmondwike with another impressive display. Shane Gray was perhaps the best for the home side, earning several hard fought points from the back, while the Andy Knowles/Dan Thompson partnership had their moments and Norman Carson gamely battled to seven from three outings.
NORTHUMBRIA: Lee Redshaw 9+1, Dan Thompson 9+1, Shane Gray 9, Bradley Stansfield 8, Andy Knowles 7+2, Norman Carson 7, Paul Thompson 6+1, Sam Stansfield 2
EDINBURGH: Gavin Kennedy 20, Kieran Swanson 19+1, Ewan Kennedy 19+1, Lewis Foxley 15+1, Dode Mitchell 10+2, Skye Mitchell 7
Northern League Division 3
The Under 13 squad was at least able to let Northumbria end the day with some cheer, they taking the win in an evenly matched contest with both sides providing five riders. Lee Redshaw rode to another untroubled maximum at this level, with Samantha Crane and Bradley Stansfield providing plenty of points in support. The Edinburgh squad overall was somewhat younger, but they certainly seemed to enjoy themselves, none more so than Ben Foxley who ride brilliantly to pick up three third places despite quite a bit smaller than any of his opposition.
NORTHUMBRIA: Lee Redshaw 16, Bradley Stansfield 15, Samantha Crane 14, Sam Stansfield 11, Bailey Bowman 10
EDINBURGH: James Foxley 13, Ciaran Leslie 13, Ben Foxley 7, Brogan Leslie 7, Amy McDonald 5
If I knew how to bet I would probably have put money on the Edinburgh riders testing the Referee's resolve to hammer slow and dodgy riding after his stern warning to all of us before the match. However, the title contenders made no such effort to bend the rules and simply dominated with a super show of gating prowess. I've only got Kamil's exclusion to thank for my score of an unexpected third place, a bad day indeed for me but I wasn't alone there. I did expect however to be able to run close behind and got away with that most times, Mikey in particular leaving me a metre on the outside to sit on his shoulder, knowing he was 10 mph faster if needed but covering his partner superbly. Later on Jake showed no such generosity and although I let the side down by not racing after lap 2 there's no way I'm tasting that fence for anyone after being eased out to it every time before that. If only the School hadn't insisted on keeping those running lanes behind the back straight we may well have had the same space to race on as Wednesfield which would have provided much better opportinities for slow gaters.
The Division 2 result was a bit of a surprise, or at least the size of the Falcon''s win was, with every one of our lads looking super slow, like they'd had a few months off. Just can't get my head around that one at all.