5th Jul, 2022

Coventry secure biggest win of season against Plymouth

COVENTRY equalled their biggest win of the season with an emphatic 59-31 victory over Plymouth at Leicester last Sunday.

No.1 Connor Mountain reeled off a 15-point maximum for the Europress Bees and it was also a great day for reserve Luke Harris, who raced to a four-ride paid maximum.

And with solid scores right down the order, Bees continued their push for the play-offs, and are very much on course for a top-four finish – as long as their remaining meetings can be arranged before the cut-off.

The Devils were limited to four race wins, two apiece from Ellis Perks and Richard Andrews, with the result a blow to their outside chances of making the top four.

Bees made a whirlwind start with two 4-2s and two 5-1s in the opening four races, Mountain winning the battle of the big guns in Heat One, despite a scare on the last bend, whilst Perks salvaged second place from Danny Phillips.

With Harris and Ryan MacDonald collecting a 4-2 in Heat Two, Luke Ruddick and Jamie Halder combined for maximum points in Heat Three as Andrews retired, and then Henry Atkins hit trouble in the next, allowing Harris to re-pass him for second place.

The Devils did gain a foothold with a 5-1 from Perks and Ryan Terry-Daley in Heat Five, but it proved to be a brief respite as Bees led 26-16 after seven races before recording three successive 5-1s.

Phillips and Harris combined in Heat Eight before an excellent ninth with Halder getting the better of Atkins before Ruddick came through to join his partner for another maximum – and then Mountain and Phillips put the meeting beyond the visitors in the next.

A further 5-1 followed from Ruddick and Harris in Heat 12 as Harris completed four unbeaten rides, and Mountain was decisive in moving Perks aside to quickly take the advantage in Heat 13.

Andrews and Kelsey Dugard picked up a consolation 4-2 in Heat 14, split by Halder, but Bees still finished in style with a 5-1 from Mountain and skipper Jon Armstrong in the last, to finish just short of the 60-point mark.

Manager Martyn Macdonald said: “Plymouth are one of those sides who can cause problems, they have several riders who are capable of scoring points at this level, but we just had more strength in depth.

“Connor was exceptional, right back to his best, and Luke Harris has taken over from where Jamie Halder left off at reserve so that was good to see as well, and the rest of the lads all did enough and worked hard again.

“I still think there’s a little bit more in the tank for us, and I do feel if everyone rides to their potential we are one of the strongest teams in the league.

“It would be great to have all seven put it together at the same time and hopefully that will be against Birmingham next week – we have to be looking for six points from that day.”

Bees are next in action on Sunday with six points available in a crucial double-header against Birmingham and Stoke.

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