West Midlands speedway: Coventry race in for derby double
Ninth-placed Coventry leapfrogged neighbours Wolves in the Elite League table as they raced in for a derby double at Brandon on Friday night.
Just eight days after winning 47-42 at Monmore, the Bees this time beat their main Midlands rivals 52-40.
Coventry's Chris Harris and Wolves' Tai Woffinden finished joint top scorers on the night with 14 points apiece.
But the Bees' enforced lower-order changes did not in the end prove too damaging.
The Bees had two guests at reserve, Sheffield's Richard Hall and Berwick's promising Frenchman David Bellego, as three of their four doubling-up riders were unavailable due to Premier League fixtures and Josef Franc was out with a knee injury.
But Bellego claimed the shock scalp of Wolves star Freddie Lindgren in Heat 1.
And skipper Harris was in blistering form, dropping just one point from five rides.
Kenni Larsen matched that with a series of fast starts, while Edward Kennett enjoyed his best Elite League display for some time.
"It was a good night," said Harris. "Everyone rode well. We got the win which we needed and to beat our local rivals always makes it even better.
"I was trying hard in the last one but I just ran out of room a little bit. But I can't complain, 14 points is good and we've all gone home safe so we're happy."
Wolves will now be looking to bounce straight back in Monday's must-win home clash with Eastbourne at Monmore.
Meanwhile, Coventry have signed Polish rider Michal Szczepaniak, who is set to make his debut for the Bees against Swindon on Wednesday night.
Coventry: Chris Harris 14, Kenni Larsen 13+1, Edward Kennett 9+2, Scott Nicholls 7, David Bellego 5+3, Richard Hall 4+1, Aaron Summers R/R.
Wolves: Tai Woffinden 14, Ricky Wells 7+1, Ty Proctor 6, Nicolai Klindt 4, Freddie Lindgren 3+2, Pontus Aspgren 3+2, Jacob Thorssell 3.
Birmingham Brummies' home clash with Elite League high riders Swindon on Thursday night was postponed due to a waterlogged track at Perry Barr.
The Brummies would have been without skipper Danny King, who failed a fitness test after damaging his ribs and coccyx crashing heavily in Monday's British Final at Monmore.
But he hopes to be fit when the Brummies go to Belle Vue on Monday night (6 August, 19:30 BST).
That is the first of a hectic four matches in five days for the Brummies, who stand fifth in the Elite League.
They host Lakeside on the Wednesday, go to Swindon the following night, then visit Essex on Friday night for the return fixture against Lakeside.
Meanwhile, Birmingham have been handed a new date for their rained-off trip to Coventry. The Elite League clash will now take place on Friday 14 September.
DUDLEY HEATHENS-STOKE POTTERS
Dudley Heathens captain Adam Roynon says that the National League leaders will go into Tuesday's Monmore clash with third-placed Stoke in a confident mood (19:30 BST).
The former Cradley club still boast a 100 per cent record this season, with nine straight National League wins - and are keen to protect that record against the Potters.
"We have a great team," said Roynon. "And I am confident that we can keep doing well.
"Hopefully, we can just keep strong together as a team and push onto the end of the season by trying to keep banging in these big home wins and away wins that we are getting."
Stoke's home meeting with Rye House on Saturday night was called off due to bad weather.