Eighth straight defeat for struggling Buxton Hitmen


Buxton team manager Joshua Moss must have thought he’d run over several black cats as his side suffered eighth successive defeat as they lost out to Cradley 57-32 in the National Trophy at Hi-Edge Raceway on Sunday afternoon.

The Hitmen team manager was hit in the morning with the news David Wallinger was feeling ill still but the rider was travelling to the circuit.

News around an hour prior to start time came that Wallinger did not feel okay to ride and was ruled out by the paramedic meaning that the home side could only field one rider in three of Wallinger’s outings putting Moss’s side on the back foot from the start.

Ben Wilson started the afternoon well for the Hitmen taking victory in the opening heat before Cradley took a 4-2 in the second race after Buxton’s Lewis Whitmore had been disqualified after falling as Heathens youngster Jason Edwards took the chequered flag ahead of Kieran Douglas with James Chattin third.

A further 4-2 and a 5-1 opened up an eight-point lead for the Black Country outfit before Wilson and home skipper Tom Woolley combined for a 5-1 for the Hitmen in heat five reducing the deficit back to four points as the Hitmen trailed 17-13 after five heats.

Kyle Bickley and Chris Widman combined for a 5-1 in heat seven to extend the Heathens lead but worse was to come for the Hitmen as Whitmore was then ruled out of action by the paramedic with an arm injury leaving the Hitmen with just four riders.

Alfie Bowtell and Edwards then gained a 5-0 over Sam Woolley who fell twice during the race resulting in him being lapped and disqualified as the Hitmen trailed the Heathens 30-17.

A further couple of 4-2 advantages and two further 5-1 heat victories for Cradley gave the away side a comfortable victory in the end and team manager Moss was totally deflated after the meeting.

He said: “It’s one thing after another really losing David (Wallinger) prior to the meeting dealt us a real body blow. Dave let us know around four hours before the start time that he didn’t feel right but turns up and goes straight home and it was really frustrating.

“We run things on a very tight budget here and I feel people are letting us down and it is irritating.

“We then lost Lewis (Whitmore) through an arm injury and that means we then had to run around six races with only one representative.

“Kieran Douglas should hold his head up high tonight he rode two on the trot here and there and worked very hard for his points and got paid nine this afternoon which his is best score for us.

“Ben (Wilson) had a bit of a sore neck before the start but he’s battled through and done really well as has skipper Tom Woolley who team rode Kieran home for a 3-3 which could well have been a 5-1 against us today and we kept the score line as respectable as we could.”

BUXTON 32: Ben Wilson 13, Tom Woolley 10+2, Kieran Douglas 8+1, Sam Woolley 1, Lewis Whitmore 0, Connor Coles R/R, David Wallinger (Did not ride)

CRADLEY 57: Alfie Bowtell 17, Kyle Bickley 14+1, Jason Edwards 13+2, Joe Lawlor 6+2, Chris Widman 6+2, James Chattin 1, Bradley Andrews R/R