Sunday July 15, 2018
SHEFFIELD again performed strongly against one of the Championship’s top two – but again they had nothing to show for it at Peterborough on Sunday.

The Window Centre Tigers went down 49-41 after taking the home side right down to the wire, with the scores level with two races to go.

Even after conceding a 5-1 in Heat 14, a return maximum in the finale would have seen them snatch a draw – but the previously unbeaten Charles Wright, who was outstanding, lost out along with Kyle Howarth to Michael Palm Toft and Scott Nicholls, and that left Tigers without a single league point for their efforts.

Todd Kurtz gave them an encouraging start by defeating Nicholls in the opening race, but they did fall behind in Heat 3 when guest Ty Proctor was headed by Palm Toft and Bradley Wilson-Dean.

However, the visitors hit straight back from that setback with their other stand-in Jordan Stewart linking up with Wright to level the scores in the next race with some strong racing on the first lap.

A close contest ensued as the next two races were shared, Wright maintaining his unbeaten start with a fine ride to get the better of Nicholls in Heat 6.

A 4-2 for the Panthers in the next put them ahead with Proctor just fending off Emil Grondal in the battle for second, and a run of five successive shared races followed.

Wright defeated the strong Palm Toft/Wilson-Dean pairing in Heat 9, and skipper Howarth also notched a race win as the Panthers were kept very much in check.

There was a chance to level the match in Heat 12 only for Wilson-Dean to find a way inside Stewart off turn four – but Tigers did grab a 4-2 in the next with a sensational effort by Wright to round Nicholls, with Howarth tucking in for third.

At 39-39 it was all to race for but when the visitors really needed a fast start from Stewart in Heat 14 he was unable to deliver – and for all the efforts of Broc Nicol, who did improve as the meeting went on, he couldn’t defeat Palm Toft and Grondal.

Tigers’ hopes were still high going into Heat 15, but the start went against them with Wright unable to pull off further heroics as Palm Toft and Nicholls covered every angle to clinch a flattering eight-point win for the home side.

Stand-in team boss Laurence Rogers said: “The boys fought hard and we were still in with a chance of a draw going into the last race, but unfortunately it was Peterborough who got the 5-1.

“Sadly Charles made his worst start of the meeting and then got blocked in a bit, and although he was chasing hard he couldn’t get by.

“I felt bad taking Broc out of his third ride but we needed the points, and it’s all part of a big learning curve for him. In Heat 14 he gave it 200 per cent and was unlucky to only get one point out of it.

“I do still feel Sheffield can make a run for the top four. It was so close right up to the end at Lakeside, and again here, so now it’s up to Steady (Simon Stead) to get them going!

“They’ve been a great bunch to work with, I did know quite a few of them from before anyway which was a big plus, but they’ve gelled well together and it’s a good team.”

Tigers stage the Top Gun Individual at Owlerton on Thursday with reduced admission and an attractive line-up in place.

PETERBOROUGH 49: Scott Nicholls 11+1, Michael Palm Toft 11, Bradley Wilson-Dean 9+2, Emil Grondal 5+1, Tom Bacon 5+1, Simon Lambert 4+2, Jake Allen 4+1.
SHEFFIELD 41: Charles Wright 12+1, Jordan Stewart 7+2, Todd Kurtz 7+1, Ty Proctor 7, Kyle Howarth 6, Georgie Wood 1+1, Broc Nicol 1.

Share This:   Facebook Twitter