Saturday May 06, 2017
DANNY Ayres wowed the crowd by winning heat four without a saddle – but his late troubles in the 46-43 defeat at Leicester proved a bigger pain in the backside.

The Motor Market Heathens number five, who also represents the Lions in the Premiership, had scored eight from three rides locked up in heat 13 before a mechanical fault caused him to miss the two minutes in a last-heat decider.

Ayres went off 15 metres but could not catch up as Josh Bates, the reserve who rode at number one for the much-changed hosts, led Matt Williamson in the only 5-1 of the night to secure the Ivor Brown Memorial Trophy.

Looking back on his battle without a saddle, Ayres said: “I have never had anything like that before. I think that was where the motocross came into it but when I looked round, I saw I was still winning.

“I am a racer and I don’t give up. It was a good one to win, I just hate going away from a meeting feeling a bit frustrated.

“Doing the talking afterwards is the difficult part. In speedway, you have big highs and lows and lately, I have had some massive highs.

“I really hate ending meetings like that, it was sad. My brain is everywhere at the moment, trying to analyse things but I have to try to take the positives.

“Even Batesy (Damien Bates, Leicester promoter) said I have come along well and was on the pace but I don’t want to let anyone down.

“The bike let me down in heat 15, I snapped the cable going to the spark plug and I couldn’t jump on the spare bike because I had broken the seat.

“These meetings help to build your confidence and make you feel like a proper team player. I love having the pressure of the boys relying on you to go out there and do a job but we will go home, analyse everything and come back stronger.”

Next up for the Heathens is a trip to the Isle of Wight in the National League on Thursday, May 18.

LEICESTER 46: Josh Bates 15, Matt Williamson 11+1, Richard Hall 7, Kyle Bickley 7, Tom Woolley 4+1, Chris Widman 2+1, Luke Woodhull 0.

CRADLEY 43: Tom Perry 11, Dan Greenwood 9+2, Max Clegg 8, Danny Ayres 8, Joe Lawlor 6+2, Ben Woodhull 1, Conor Dwyer r/r.


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