RESULT: Monarch Oxford Cheetahs 42 Poole Pirates 48

The Monarch Oxford Cheetahs slipped to a 42-48 British Speedway Championship defeat to Poole Pirates in front of a sell-out crowd at Oxford Stadium on Wednesday evening.

The Monarch Cheetahs trailed by six points after as many races were completed as the visiting Pirates quickly got to grips with a drying track in front of 2,000 supporters.

A succession of race advantages in heats seven, eight and nine swung the pendulum in Cheetahs’ favour with race wins for Troy Batchelor and Jack Thomas putting Jason Crump’s men 28-26 ahead.

Pirates showed their class after the interval, though, and registered 5-1s in heats 11 and 14 to secure victory.

Monarch Cheetahs heat leader Jack Thomas was disappointed by the result, but took the positives from the performance after he dropped only a single point from his final three rides.  

“Poole are a hard team to race against – home and away,” said Thomas. “I had tough start, but all the boys worked hard and we gave it our all.

“It was a close meeting, and the best team won. But hopefully next time we’ll be in front. I had a few setup problems, after a couple of races I got dialled in and I felt awesome.

“It’s amazing to drive to the stadium knowing we’re going to be racing in front of a full house – the feeling is indescribable and gives us all a big boost. We can hear the fans cheering from underneath our helmets, which is pretty special.

“Poole is an intimidating track to race at because of the atmosphere and prestige of the club. They always boast a good one to seven, and even when you race them at home you have to be on it.

“We’ve got time now to refocus ahead of a big weekend in the north.”

The Monarch Cheetahs are back in action on Saturday evening away to Berwick Bandits before facing Newcastle Diamonds 24-hours later in a weekend double header.

Oxford Cheetahs : 42
1. Troy Batchelor – 0, 2, 3, 2, 2, 3 = 12
2. Cameron Heeps – R/R
3. Jack Thomas – 0, 0, 3, 3, 2 = 8
4. Kyle Newman – 2, 2, 3, 1, 0 = 8
5. Scott Nicholls – 2, 1, 1, R, 1 = 5
6. Dillon Ruml – 3, 1′, 2′, 1′, 1′, 1 = 9+4
7. Nathan Stoneman (G) – 0, 0, 0 = 0

Poole Pirates : 48
1. Steve Worrall – 1, 2, 3, 3, 0 = 9
2. Zach Cook – 3, 1′, 1, 2′ = 7+2
3. Richard Lawson – 3, 0, 3, 3, 2 = 11
4. Ben Cook – 1, 2, 0, 2′ = 5+1
5. Danny King – 3, 3, 2, 1 = 9
6. Drew Kemp – 2, Fx, 0, 0, 3 = 5
7. Nathan Ablitt – 1′, 1, 0 = 2+1