Brilliant Bears beat Bandits!
Redcar produced one of their biggest home wins in recent years as they defeated Berwick 57-33 at the ECCO Arena. Danny King returned to form for the Bears with 13+1 whilst Berwick’s Jonas Knudsen and Thomas Jorgensen both hit 7 for the visitors.
Heat 1 saw the Bandits take a 4-2 heat advantage (1 of only 2 advantages they secured) with Knudsen impressively holding off pressure from King whilst Rory Schlein held a comfortable 3rd to start Berwick’s evening with a heat advantage. Heat 2 saw Jacob Hook (on debut for Berwick) win his first race in Bandits colours despite educated pressure from Connor Bailey, but with Berwick’s Connor Coles being passed by Jake Mulford on lap 2, Berwick could not extend their early lead.
Heat 3 saw the much anticipated return of Erik Riss in Redcar colours and The Business did not disappoint as he trapped superbly to win comfortably whilst Jason Edwards kept Leon Flint in 3rd to send Redcar into a slender 2 point lead of their own. Charles Wright began his night with a comfortable heat 4 win but all the action was behind the skipper as Mulford rode a superb race to keep Jorgensen behind him which meant back to back Bears 5-1’s, much to the delight of the home crowd.
Berwick hit back to reduce the arrears to 4 points as Knudsen attacked brilliantly to pass Riss around the outside on bend 3 of the final lap to take the win and with Edwards unable to pass Schlein, Berwick remained hopeful after reducing the deficit.
After a shared heat 6 won by King, drama followed in the battle for 3rd in heat 7! Wright won comfortably but all eyes were on the battle between Flint and Bailey with “The Tornado” building up speed on the outside line only for Flint to leave the Bears reserve no room entering bend 1 of the final lap with Bailey falling and then remonstrating with the Berwick skipper.
Heat 8 saw more long term positive signs for the Bears as Hume and Mulford combined for a 5-1 with Mulford again showing great speed to pass another Bandit in the shape of Jacob Hook and despite Hook gaining ground on Hume on the run to the line, he was unable to pass which sent Redcar into a 28-20 lead on Teesside.
Heat 9 saw more superb speedway as Jorgensen passed Riss for the win but no heat advantage was forthcoming for Berwick as Edwards nipped past Schlein to ensure Redcar’s 8 point lead remained intact. Heat 10 saw another Bears maximum heat advantage as King and Hume took a relatively comfortable win to put Redcar into an extremely strong 12 point lead.
After Schlein lowered Wright’s colours to win a shared heat 11, Riss took his 2nd win of the night to take his tally to 10 points whilst Mulford again showed fantastic battling spirit to pass Hook on lap 3 to take 3rd and give Redcar their 5th heat advantage on a sunny but brisk evening at the ECCO Arena.
Heat 13 saw another Redcar 5-1 as Wright and King gated and left the Berwick pair standing to send Redcar over the 45 point threshold and secure the 2 league points for the Bears. Heat 14 saw Jason Edwards seize on a Berwick error as Jye Etheridge (more focused on Redcar’s Connor Bailey) left a sizeable gap on bend 2 of the opening lap which Edwards pounced upon to win comfortably whilst Bailey secured a relatively comfortable 3rd place to extend Redcar’s lead to 20 points.
Heat 15 saw King and Riss finish proceedings with another untroubled 5-1 and with it, a 57-33 success. Redcar will have tougher tests throughout the Cab Direct Championship but the whole team performance, including a man of the match performance from Jake Mulford, shows that Redcar are a force to be reckoned with in 2023.
Redcar = 57
1. Danny King = 13+1
2. Danyon Hume = 4+2
3. Erik Riss = 12+1
4. Jason Edwards = 6+2
5. Charles Wright = 11
6. Connor Bailey = 4+1
7. Jake Mulford = 7+2
Berwick = 33
1. Rory Schlein = 5
2. Jonas Knudsen = 7
3. Leon Flint = 4+1
4. Jye Etheridge = 5
5. Thomas Jorgensen = 7
6. Jacob Hook = 5+1
7. Connor Coles = 0