8th Dec, 2016

Poole victory as good as it gets yet for Coventry Bees boss Gary Havelock

Coventry Editorial 26th Apr, 2016 Updated: 28th Oct, 2016

SPEEDWAY: GARY Havelock has hailed last Friday’s dramatic 47-46 victory over Poole as the best victory of his managerial career after his side recovered from a 12-point deficit to record their third victory of the Elite League season, writes Observer speedway reporter Robin Allen.

It looked as though the writing was on the wall for the Bees after they made a terrible start by suffering three 5-1 reverses in the opening four heats which left them with a mountain to climb.

But whenever Bees need a man for a crisis skipper Chris Harris always steps up to the plate and he got the home side back in the meeting with an 8-1 tactical ride with Krzysztof Kasprzak in heat seven.

Three straight heat advantages in heats ten, 11 and 12 put the home side in front for the first time before in heat 14 newly crowned British Under-21 Champion Josh Bates teamed up with Danny King for an emphatic 5-1 which really turned the screw on the Pirates.

“I know Poole were not expecting us to get a 5-1 in heat 14 but having a young kid taking responsibility like that is just amazing,” said Havelock.

“With James Sarjeant in heat 12 and then Josh Bates in heat 14 they were just phenomenal, I got him and Sarj’ together saying to them I needed someone to win the race and Josh responded saying he would do it.”

Despite being three points up going into heat 15 there was still uncertainty whether the Bees could close out the meeting, knowing they only needed a 4-2 reverse to take the win.

Harris and Freddie Lindgren battled for three and a half laps until the Brit made his trademark cut-back move on the final bend to secure second place and the victory to the relief of his team manager.

“I was a bit worried about Chris (Harris) in heat 15 because I did not know what he was doing because he passed Lindgren and then had to pass him again because he kept riding the outside which was not working until he finally switched to the inside,” Havelock added.

“I am really proud of the boys, it is probably my best team win since I have been team manager here.

“Yes we have had a lot of wins including away from home but to do what we did to a team like Poole was nothing short of sensational.

“I do not think that Poole expected to be 12 points up this season and have a team come back to win by a point.

“Every single person that was here for this meeting will be back next week there is no doubt about that.

“We just need to get as many people here as possible because the boys feed off it, particularly the young ones like Garrity, Sarj and Bates. If we can have that sort of atmosphere week in and week out then we will be alright.”

Bees promoter Mick Horton is all smiles. (s) Photo by Chris Simpson