BELLE VUE ACES 46 – 44 WOLVERHAMPTON
Belle Vue’s top three underperformed for the Aces in front of the TV cameras on Wednesday night, as they faced the table-topping Wolverhampton Wolves in a top of the table clash. Luckily for the them the rest of the team all came to the party in Max Fricke, reserves Joe Jacobs and Richie Worrall and his brother Steve, as they scored 31 points between then and helped the home time to a tight 46-44 victory.
Things didn’t get off to the best of starts for Belle Vue, after the Wolves Swedish duo of Freddie Lindgren and Peter Karlsson eased to a 5-1 for the visitors in the opening race. The reserves race saw Richie Worrall and Joe Jacobs responding straight away for the Aces and bounced back with a 5-1 of their own. Australian Sam Masters then shown his liking for the National Speedway Stadium track with a win in heat 3, as the Aussie made a great get away from the outside gate to see him pulling clear of Craig Cook after the Cumbrian man was on his back wheel the whole race.
Belle Vue reserves Richie Worrall & Joe Jacob battle the Wolves pair
Max Fricke then let the visitors know that they wouldn’t have things easy in the match, as the Australian Under-21 rider took heat 4 with a comfortable race win. Peter Karlsson and Max Clegg then helped extending the Wolverhampton lead with a 4-2 in heat 5 and had a similar result in the following race with Lindgren getting the better of Fricke who was all over him like a rash. With Wolverhampton up by 6 points in the meeting, it did seem that the league leaders had the jump on the Aces with their quicker starts and looked to be on course of getting revenge for their thrashing 3 weeks ago.
Masters recorded his second race win of the night for the visitors and fifth for the travelling Monmore Green club, as the meeting was becoming a bit too easy for the Wolves and were out gating and out pacing the home side in the opening half of the meeting. Belle Vue team manager Mark Lemon needed something special from somewhere and he got it in heat 8, when Max Fricke made a great gate for the hosts and saw his team mate Joe Jacobs pushing Peter Karlsson out wide towards the fence and then joined his teammate to send the Aces onto a 5-1 victory and gave the home fans hope that a possible comeback might be on.
Belle Vue’s Steve Worrall blasts around Wolves’ Jacob Thorsell on his way to a 5-1
If the fans didn’t believe that a comeback was on after the previous race, then they were certainly did in the next race as the ‘brothers from St.Helens’ roared to a second successive 5-1 for Belle Vue, thanks to Steve Worrall getting the better of Jacob Thorsell to help the Aces nip in front at 28-26. Wolverhampton then came back with a couple of 4-2’s of their own in heats 10 & 11, with firstly Swedish duo Lindgren and Karlsson levelling the meeting for the away side and then Klindt and Masters putting the Wolves back in the lead.
This top of the table clash was very much a living up it’s billing and was becoming a see-saw battle between two old rivals. Belle Vue have certainly shown a lot of fight under Mark Lemon over the past season and bit while he has took charge of the famous Manchester club, and Joe Jacobs and Richie Worrall shown their battling qualities securing a 5-1 for the Aces and moved them back ahead at 37-35 and this time never let that lead slip.
Heat 13 on paper looked to be a very good prospect for the Wolves to retake the lead, as between them they had outscored their opposite numbers by 14 points to 8. However, races aren’t won on paper and saw Craig Cook making his first contribution in the match to see him blasting himself around the two Wolves riders and having a good battle with Lindgren that went down to the line. Matej Zagar also came to the party when it mattered most, with the Slovenian picking up third after getting the better of Nicolai Klindt for a 4-2 to the hosts.
With the track becoming slicker towards the back end of the meeting and the dirt by the fence, it saw Jacob Thorsell getting out ahead of Max Fricke and staying put despite the efforts of the Belle Vue man who gave everything to pass him and set up a last heat decider, with the score 44-40 for the Aces. Belle Vue knew that a maximum heat win would stop their opponents from collecting a point from the match, but disaster struck late on for the home side, when Cook shed a chain on the starting gate just moments before the race was about to start. Cook was unable to get a bike ready in time and was excluded under the two minutes rules and saw Belle Vue boss Mark Lemon replacing him with Joe Jacobs.
Freddie Lindgren and Wolverhampton had the last say on what was an entertaining Speedway meeting between the two sides, as Lindgren fended off Fricke to take the win and saw team mate Sam Masters getting passed Joe Jacobs after the Ipswish native had done terrific for a lap to hold him off. Belle Vue took the match 46-44 as well the 3 league points, while Wolverhampton claimed a losing bonus to see them adding to their total too and see the Wolves four points ahead of the Aces in the table.
Belle Vue Aces = 46
1. Matej Zagar – 1, 2, 2, 1 = 6
2. Steve Worrall – 0, 2, 2′, 0 = 4+1
3. Scott Nicholls – 0, 0, 2, 1′ = 3+1
4. Max Fricke – 3, 2, 3, 2, 2 = 12
5. Craig Cook – 2, 1′, 0, 3 = 6+1
6. Richie Worrall – 3, 0, 3, 2′ = 8+1
7. Joe Jacobs – 2′, 0, 2′, 3, 0 = 7+2
Wolverhampton Wolves = 44
1. Freddie Lindgren – 3, 3, 3, 2, 3 = 14
2. Peter Karlsson – 2′, 3, 0, 1 = 6+1
3. Sam Masters – 3, 3, 1, 0, 1 = 8
4. Jacob Thorssell – 2, 0, 1, 3 = 6
5. Nicolai Klindt (G) – 1, 1, 3, 0 = 5
6. Max Clegg – 0, 1, 1, 0 = 2
7. Kyle Howarth – 1, 1′, 0, 1 = 3+1