Plenty of action in speedway double header at Smallbrook

·2-min read
Arran Butcher in action during the Island Masters speedway event at Smallbrook Stadium.  Photos: Ian Groves
Arran Butcher in action during the Island Masters speedway event at Smallbrook Stadium. Photos: Ian Groves

FOLLOWING his trio of impressive wins on his debut for the Wightlink Warlocks last week, Arran Butcher switched to grasstrack — making mincemeat of the opposition as he scorched to five comfortable wins to ease through Round 1 of the Island Masters Series at Ryde's Smallbrook Stadium.

With several of the bigger grasstrack names on their way to lucrative weekend racing abroad, it was left to some of the up-and-coming racers and the more experienced to entertain the Smallbrook faithful.

But no one could live with Butcher, who willingly opted for the Island before heading to Dover and the night crossing to France for another hi-octane weekend of racing on the continent.

As well as the Island Masters, the meeting featured the first of two qualifying rounds for the Freelance Installations British Upright Championship.

Isle of Wight County Press: Harry Gent in Island Masters action at Smallbrook Stadium, Ryde.
Isle of Wight County Press: Harry Gent in Island Masters action at Smallbrook Stadium, Ryde.

Harry Gent in Island Masters action at Smallbrook Stadium, Ryde.

Isle of Wight County Press: Island Masters action on Thursday evening.
Isle of Wight County Press: Island Masters action on Thursday evening.

Island Masters action on Thursday evening.

Isle of Wight County Press: Harry Gent looking to get off to a flying start in the Island Masters.
Isle of Wight County Press: Harry Gent looking to get off to a flying start in the Island Masters.

Harry Gent looking to get off to a flying start in the Island Masters.

It was Kentish racer Keith Cornell who steered his trusty Weslake machine to three convincing wins in an unbeaten performance.

Joining him in the August final will be Nigel Coates, Glyn Edwards and Shaun Bickley — all of whom battled hard on the pacy Smallbrook circuit.

Wightlink Warriors co-owner, Barry Bishop, said: “ It was a super slick show, all wrapped up by 9pm — in no small part due to the co-operation of the riders being ready to race without delay.

Isle of Wight County Press: The British Upright Championships heat got off to a flyer.
Isle of Wight County Press: The British Upright Championships heat got off to a flyer.

The British Upright Championships heat got off to a flyer.

Isle of Wight County Press: British Upright Championships action.
Isle of Wight County Press: British Upright Championships action.

British Upright Championships action.

"In the Masters, Arran was just brilliant. He continues to impress us with his commitment and ability, while Keith was ultra-keen to succeed in the Uprights — three smart starts saw him home in fine style.

"Thanks to all those who came tonight for another packed programme that I’m really proud of.”

                                                            RESULTS

                                                   ISLAND MASTERS

C Final: Bill Haynes, Jon Freeman, Rob Snow.

B Final: Luke Tuck, Dean Cutler, Giles Dismore, Phil Spencer.

A Final: Arran Butcher, Harry Gent, Dave Hammond, Ian Leverington.

                                 BRITISH UPRIGHT CHAMPIONSHIPS

Keith Cornell 9, Nigel Coates 7, Glyn Edwards 6, Shaun Bickley 6, Dave Johnson 4, Phil Spencer 3, Mark Anderson 1, Andy Hickman 0.

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