A stunning last heat ride from teenage star Drew Kemp saw the ‘KJM/Manchetts’ Fen Tigers take the spoils in a closely contested meeting on the evening of Birmingham’s 90th year celebrations. The meeting was a credit to both sides and National League Speedway with this titanic battle going down to the wire.

Although both sides were weakened by absences the action was fast and furious as the teams battled for the lead in the early heats. Race wins from Matt Marson, Danny Ayres and Drew in the first five heats saw the Fen Tigers take an early four point advantage. However with the Championship hardened top two of Tom Bacon and James Shanes showing their mettle it was proving difficult to put too much distance between the two teams. Another fine win in heat eight from Kemp with Marson backing him up in third saw the gap remain at four points as the interval approached.

Heat eleven produced a sensational race as Kemp and Shanes swopped positions before Shanes won the moment,  Josh Bailey won heat twelve backed up again by the excellent Marson and the Fen Tigers were six ahead with three races to go. Heat thirteen was controversial as Ayres came down and was excluded although it seemed the wrong decision from the pits viewing area, the re run saw Ryan Kinsley giving everything but being squeezed out by Bacon and Shanes as the Brummies scored an important 5-1 to reduce the lead to just two. Another drawn heat in fourteen saw everything come down to the final race.

Mildenhall team manager Phil Kirk had no doubts about giving young Drew Kemp his chance in heat fifteen in his first meeting in the main body of the team and the youngster rewarded that faith with a superb ride that saw him see off the attentions of both Bacon and Shanes to win the meeting and start the Fen Tigers own celebrations.

Speaking after the meeting Kevin Jolly said “This was an excellent team performance tonight and the lads are reaping the rewards for their hard work and support of each other. Our team spirit is good and we keep finding that little extra.

Drew stepped up into the main body tonight and like everything took it in his stride, he is an exceptionally talented young man and his ride in heat fifteen defied his young years. All the lads scored good points and I was pleased to see Matt take over the mantle of lead reserve tonight scoring valuable points in all of his rides.

I would like to thank our excellent supporters who gave us great backing tonight and hope our performance made up somewhat for the recent disappointment of meetings being called off which has caused them considerable expense’

Birmingham Brummies 44
James Shanes 15+1 (6 rides), Tom Bacon 13+1 (5), Leon Flint 10 (5), Sheldon Davies 3+1 (6), Callum Walker 3 (5), Arran Butcher 0 (3) and R/R Danyon Hume

KJM/Manchetts Fen Tigers 46
Drew Kemp 13 (5 rides), Josh Bailey 9 (4), Danny Ayres 8 (5), Matt Marson 7+1 (5), Danny Halsey 4+2 (4), Ryan Kinsley 4+2 (4) and Sam Woods 1 (3)