Wednesday June 01, 2022
LEICESTER made it six successive victories in all competitions with a powerful display to win 52-38 at Birmingham on Wednesday.

It was the Watling JCB Lions’ second consecutive four-point haul on the road, following last month’s success at Edinburgh, and it leaves them a point clear of Poole at the top of the table.

Skipper Kyle Howarth took top billing on a night of entertaining racing at Perry Barr, as he was unbeaten from his first five rides before missing out in Heat 15.

Nick Morris was solid at No.1, whilst the Lions had domination of the lower order with reserves Anders Rowe and Dan Thompson out-scoring their home counterparts by a margin of 15 points to one.

The Brummies’ main threat came from recent signing Justin Sedgmen, whose fast gating took him to four wins out of five, but his only real support came from guest Erik Riss.

Lions took control of the meeting with 5-1s in Heats 2 and 4, although they had a scare in Heat 3 when home captain Ashley Morris lifted on the exit of turn two which brought Richie Worrall down on the back straight, with Joe Thompson laying his machine down.

Fortunately the Lions duo were able to continue, and they went 12 points up with a trio of 4-2s including a fine ride by Howarth to reel in and pass Riss in Heat 6, whilst Worrall recovered from his fall by defeating Jake Allen in the next.

Worrall worked hard to get between Riss and Stefan Nielsen in Heat 10, and the home side held a 5-1 position in the next race only for Nick Morris to pass Allen and then go close to catching Sedgmen.

Lions led 40-32 with three heats remaining and then secured the result with a pair of 5-1s – first from Morris and Howarth, who convincingly took Heat 13, and then with a superb effort by the Thompson twins to team-ride Ashley Morris out of contention in Heat 14.

Birmingham ended with a 4-2 in Heat 15 with Nick Morris preventing a 5-1 by passing Allen on the last lap, with Howarth’s maximum hopes coming to an end.

Boss Stewart Dickson said: “We rode pretty well, pretty solid on the night, it was a solid team performance from the six riders missing Connor (Mountain), and it was a thoroughly professional job.

“We knew Anders was good off the inside gates here, and I played the programme accordingly for that, and he got us a good start.

“Fair play to Birmingham, they got back into it with clever use of the tactical later on, because I did wonder when Laurence (Rogers) was going to use it, but we got a couple of 5-1s again in Heats 13 and 14 which put it out of their reach.

“Four points keeps us top of the table for that little bit longer, and it was a very pleasing result for us. It wasn’t as one-sided as it looks, but from a Leicester perspective we’re very happy.”

The Lions now prepare for a busy weekend with home and away clashes with Berwick, starting with the trip to Shielfield Park on Saturday.

BIRMINGHAM 38: Justin Sedgmen 13+1, Erik Riss 10+1, Stefan Nielsen 5, Jake Allen 5, Ashley Morris 4, James Pearson 1, Adam Roynon 0.
LEICESTER 52: Kyle Howarth 13+2, Nick Morris 12, Anders Rowe 9, Richie Worrall 8+1, Dan Thompson 6+1, Joe Thompson 4+2, Connor Mountain r/r.


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