Magnificent Bears march into cup quarter finals
The Redcar Agilia Bears saw off the Berwick Bandits 38 – 52 on the night with both of our British Champions, Danny King and Charles Wright, leading the way and finishing with maximums, Charles’ second consecutive max within 24 hours.
Redcar started the match carrying a 16-point advantage from the first leg but a professional performance was needed to ensure that didn’t slip away to the Bandits who had convincingly beat Edinburgh at Shielfield just last week.
The match started with four shared heats before the Bandits took the lead with a 4-2 in heat five. The lead was short lived however as heat seven saw Hume get round the boards to register his first race win as a Bear in style with Charles following him home for a 5-1 and the Bears never looked back again.
Heat 8 saw the Bandits play their only real tactical option of using Etheridge in the R/R position, only to have that plan ruined by Connor Baileys lightning start, Etheridge was forced into trying an outside move which backfired in a spectacular mid corner flip leaving Bailey and Edwards to land another heat advantage.
Six of the last seven races were then won by Wright, King and super guest Lawson who was again superb for the Bears. They had solid back up from the rest of the team which put the tie beyond doubt by as early as heat 10. Hume’s excellent performance was rewarded with his first heat 15 appearance of the season along side King who completed his 15 point maximum.
It was a performance that capped an excellent four days for the Bears with three strong wins in four days and some incredible support from the fans both home and away.
Glasgow now await the Bears in the KOC quarter finals with dates to be announced very soon, it’s a tie that will be a much tougher test for the 2023 Bears as we look to reclaim the trophy we won in 2019.
Another tough task on the horizon is our first Cab Direct Championship league match at Oxford this coming Wednesday, like Redcar they have been built with a strong top three including the top rider in the league last year, Sam Masters. Its likely former Bear Kerr will unfortunately miss the match after his spectacular crash last week, but we will see Jordan Jenkins for the first time since his departure. Its likely Erik Riss will still be missing through illness as he continues his recovery so a guest will be employed again.
Next Saturday we conclude our BSN Series group stage against Birmingham at the Ecco Arena, a win by any scoreline is needed to see us progress to the semi-final.
Berwick Bandits – 38 (75)
- Thomas Jorgensen = 5
- Jonas Knudsen = R/R
- Leon Flint = 10
- Jye Etheridge = 6+2
- Rory Schlein = 5+2
- Greg Blair = 3
- Connor Coles = 9+2
Redcar Agilia Bears = 52 (105)
- Richard Lawson (G) = 10+1
- Connor Bailey = 3
- Charles Wright = 11+1 MAX
- Danyon Hume = 7+1
- Danny King = 15 MAX
- Jason Edwards = 5+1
- Jake Mulford = 1+1
📸 Colin Poole