Bullets duo eye title

Published on 13th September 2022
Author George Dodds
2018 Champion Ben Morley inside 2022 hopeful Greg Blair Picture: Keith Hamblin

Kyle Bickley and Greg Blair will fly the GHT Bullets’ flag in the National Development League Riders’ Championship at Scunthorpe on Sunday, September 25.

They will take their place in a strong field bidding to lift the trophy last won by Anders Rowe who beat Drew Kemp and Max Clegg at the Eddie Wright Raceway in 2019, the result called after heat 12 as heavy rain fell in Lincolnshire.

It will be a third outing for the Bullets’ number one who wore Belle Vue colours in the last staging – alongside Leon Flint – as well as the 2018 version. Clegg also rides in this year’s event alongside Kent team-mate Ben Morley, winner in 2018, while Nathan Stoneman has recovered from a shoulder blade injury sustained riding for the FTS Bandits, powered by Keenwood Karpets, against Plymouth last month and will represent Oxford Chargers alongside Jordan Jenkins. Adam Roynon, a winner in 2006, is back in Plymouth colours this year and will start as one of the favourites on the track where he ended the 2022 season as a Scunthorpe reserve.

Bullets’ coach Kevin Little brought the third tier individual crown back to Berwick in 1995 with a flawless maximum at Long Eaton while four years later club co-owner Scott Courtney was third in a meeting won by Linlithgow team-mate Jonathon Swales at Mildenhall.

By the time the individual meeting is staged, start 3pm, the Bullets hope to know who and where they will be racing in their NDL Play-off semi-final.

Weather permitting two crucial outstanding fixtures are due to be staged in the next eight days with Kent hosting Belle Vue at Iwade on Sunday and then travelling to Oxford next Wednesday.

Belle Vue currently fill the fourth and final qualifying spot with 24 points and have two away matches to race. Victory at Iwade would end the hopes of both Kent and Oxford. However, if the Royals win on Sunday they would go to Cowley level on points with the Chargers in both teams’ last league fixture.

NLRC contenders … Kyle, Jason Edwards and Greg. Picture: Taz McDougall

Whoever won would then have a nervous wait until the Colts’ finally headed north knowing they needed to win to overhaul Oxford or needed the maximum four points to pip the Royals depending on the result of their clash. When that meeting is raced may become clearer after this weekend’s Championship play-off between the Monarchs and Redcar.

Similarly Leicester Lions’ progress in the KO Cup and the unfolding Championship play-offs will decide when they host the Bullets in the outstanding NDL fixture.

NDLRC line-up (not in riding order): Jason Edwards, Jack Kingston (Mildenhall), Dan Thompson, Joe Thompson (Leicester), Kyle Bickley, Greg Blair (Berwick), Ben Morley, Max Clegg (Kent), Jordan Jenkins, Nathan Stoneman (Oxford), Jack Smith, Harry McGurk (Belle Vue), Tom Wooley, Lee Complin (Armadale), Ben Trigger, Adam Roynon (Plymouth)

George Dodds
George Dodds

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