Hitmen’s play-off hopes suffer a blow

Buxton v Dudley, Nationsl League, 25.8.2013''Lee Smart (Red) and Ryan Blacklock (Blue) leading Dudley's Max Clegg (Yellow) and Nathan Greaves (White)
Buxton v Dudley, Nationsl League, 25.8.2013''Lee Smart (Red) and Ryan Blacklock (Blue) leading Dudley's Max Clegg (Yellow) and Nathan Greaves (White)

Buxton Hitmen narrowly lost to title-chasing Dudley Heathens in Sunday’s National League match.

The Hitmen took a four point lead in Heat 2, when Ryan Blacklock and Tom Woolley combined for a 5-1 over Dudley’s Max Clegg and Nathan Greaves, and managed to hold it until heat 7, when Dudley drew level.

A disastrous Heat 8 allowed the Heathens to score a 5-1 after Ryan Blacklock fell and was excluded from the re-run.

Matt Williamson made a great start in the re-run and was holding second place despite pressure from Dudley’s Dan Greenwood, but on lap two Williamson slid off allowing Greenwood to pass him.

Matt was quickly back on his bike and chasing the Heathens’ pair, but had to settle for the single point.

The Hitmen then slipped to six points behind in Heat 11 when Tom Woolley’s machine started playing up and he dropped back allowing Greenwood to pass him.

In heat 12, the Hitmen were on course for a 5-1 heat win as Adam McKinna and Ryan Blacklock led, but the latter clipped the fence with his footrest and fell, throwing his machine into the path of Dudley’s Nathan Greaves.

The Heathens’ reserve collided with Blacklock’s machine throwing him off.

Blacklock was up quickly and ran to check on his fallen opponent. Blacklock was excluded from the rerun as the cause of the stoppage.

The rerun was a 3-2 win for the Hitmen as Adam McKinna beat Max Clegg.

The Hitmen were on course for a 4-2 Heat win in heat 13, when Charles Wright suffered a rare mechanical fault when he broke a chain, and was forced to pull up,

Buxton went on to win the remaining heats 4-2, but ended up suffering a narrow loss.