Tuesday 22 May, 2012
Stoke Easy Rider Potters put up a valiant display going down to a 48-42 defeat against the Isle of Wight with the Potters leaving the Island with a point.

The Potters were up against it from the start with the news that Richie Worrall had hurt his back at the weekend and was not riding.

The Easy Rider Potters got off to a flying start with maximum points from Ashley Birks and Jaimie Pickard over Kyle Hughes.

The Islanders struck back in heat 2 as Gary Cottham took victory from Ben Reade with Danny Stoneman taking third for a Islanders 4-2 heat advantage. The Islanders levelled the scores in heat three with their second consecutive 4-2 this time from Danny Warwick and Aaron Baseby over Potters skipper Tony Atkin and Rhys Naylor the scores standing at 9 all.

Paul Starke took victory in heat four with Atkin and Reade passing Cottham for a drawn heat.

In heat five the Potters were on for maximum points before home skipper Danny Warwick came to grief on the third turn resulting in the race being stopped with Warwick being disqualified from the rerun. In the rerun the Potters pairing made no mistake as Birks and Pickard stormed from the tapes to take maximum points over Aaron Baseby to give the Potters a four point lead.

The Islanders struck back immediately with maximum points from Ben Hopwood and Hughes over Naylor to level the scores at 18 all.

The Islanders went into the lead for the first time of the night with a 5-1 from Warwick and Baseby over Reade leaving the Potters trailing 29-25 after nine heats.

In heat 11 the Birks was leading when Starke came to grief as Pickard drove up the inside of Baseby as the Potters pairing rode out of the fourth bend in front but with Starke down referee Ronnie Allen had to stop the race disqualifying the fallen Starke as the primary cause of the stoppage. In the rerun Birks made no mistake taking a comfortable victory with Stoneman taking second from Pickard on the final lap as the Potters rider suffered a loss of power the Potters gaining a 4-2 as the Islanders lead 34-32 after eleven heats.

The Islanders sealed victory on the night with a maximum heat 5-1 from baseby and Cottham over Reade leaving the Potters trailing 45-39 with one heat remaining.

In the final heat Tony Atkin was excluded for exceeding the two minutes time allowance leaving Ashley Birks as the lone Potter and Birks made no mistake as he headed home Hughes and Warwick to complete his maximum and earn the Potters a deserved point as they went down to a narrow 48-42 defeat against the Islanders.

Easy Rider Potters manager Malcolm Vasey commented "I'm delighted to be coming away from here with a point the lads battled extremely hard tonight and kept us in it right until the end. Had we had Richie (Worrall) then we may well have come away from here with a victory. Jaimie was also struggling tonight as the arm that he injured a few weeks back cramped up badly and then in the final heat Tony's clutch blew apart at the starting gate and that resulted in him being disqualified under the two minutes but on the whole I have to be satisfied with coming away with a point."

ISLE OF WIGHT 48: Danny Warwick 10+1, Kyle Hughes 8+2, Aaron Baseby 7+1, Paul Starke 7+1, Gary Cottham 7+1, Ben Hopwwod 6+1, Danny Stoneman 3.

STOKE 42: Ashley Birks 15, Ben Reade 11+2, Tony Atkin 10+1, Jaimie Pickard 5+2, Rhys Naylor 1, Ross Walter 0, Richie Worrall R/R.