COVENTRY CYCLE Speedway slipped to an eight point loss at the hands of Leicester in their latest Midland League encounter at Hearsall Common.
The Monarchs overturned a first half lead Coventry established and were helped by the superb Dave Hemsley who scored an unbeaten 20 point maximum.
Incredibly, an opening heat 6-4 courtesy of Mason Phillips and Daniel Drewett proved to be the home side’s only race advantage throughout the afternoon as nine successive shared races left both sides within two points of each other after ten heats.
Leicester broke the deadlock in heat 11 when Hemsley partnered Matt Hartshern to a 6-4, bringing the scores level at 55 points a piece.
A controversial exclusion to Kev Burns in heat 12 was overturned after deliberation in pits with the Leicester team and referee Phil Widdas – a crucial moment as Burns convincingly won the re-run ahead of Coventry’s Mason Phillips and Leicester’s Dave Frith.
Despite a dry spell of weather, the track provided excellent racing and Leicester excelled in the conditions towards the end of the meeting – earning their first and only 7-3 heat advantage in heat 17 with Burns and Hartshern.
Team manager Lee Marsh post-game said: “It’s disappointing to let a lead slip and there were opportunities to extend our lead at times during the first half.
“A loss is never what we want – obviously – but we must look at some of the performances from our youngsters and feel some real encouragement. Jimmy Wassall was fantastic again and I thought Mason and Dan rode well too.
“We have East Park next which will be another tough fixture and we’ll need to be on our a-game.”