Maximum man Coles leads Fen Tigers to victory over Hitmen
Mildenhall Fen Tigers 51 Buxton Hitmen 38
Connor Coles silenced his critics in the best possible fashion after helping to inspire Mildenhall Fen Tigers to a third straight home win with his first 15-point maximum for the club.
After being relieved of his duty as club captain earlier in the week, the 21-year-old showed what he is capable of when going through the meeting unbeaten.
In what has been a testing few months, Coles’ performance was made all the more crucial on a day when big hitters Dan Halsey, and new captain, Jon Armstrong, had rare off days.
“It was not nice to read all about the negative comments that some had written about me but today proved them wrong,” said Coles.
“I was probably more angry and it made me ride a bit more aggressively.
“It was down to dad’s engine.
“I did the same as I do every week it just worked a bit better and I guess I had a lot more confidence.
“Going into heat 15 I didn’t think I was going to get the win as I thought if I don’t gate then Ollie Greenwood and Tom Stokes would beat me.
“I didn’t make it but I stayed wide in the dirt but the bike pulled me past them all.”
After trading 4-2s in the opening two heats the hosts opened up a lead they would not surrender with a 5-1 by Coles, backed up by Halsey in heat three.
Although the Hitmen reduced the gap between the two sides to just a single point come the conclusion of heat nine, and once again after heat 11, the hosts earned what was to be a crucial 5-1 masterminded by Halsey and supported by Widman in heat 12.
With Connor Mountain bringing home a 4-2 in the following race, for his fourth win of the meeting, the result was confirmed after the scoreline was mirrored by Coles, and Luke Ruddick in the penultimate contest.
Although the points were in the bag, there was the small matter in the finale to see whether either Mountain or Coles could remain unbeaten.
While Mountain made the gate, Coles showed his racing skills to force his way through and take the win, and all the glory.
Scores:Mildenhall Fen Tigers: C Mountain 14+1, A Bowtell 2, D Halsey 5+1, C Coles 15, J Armstrong 5, L Ruddick 1, C Widman 9+2.
Buxton Hitmen: O Greenwood 7, S Jones R/R Blacklock 8, S Rutherford 1, T Stokes (g) 8, R Burton 9+2, L Geary 5, L Whitmore 0.
n The Fen Tigers are not in action this weekend, but they return to the track on Tuesday evening with a National League outing away at the Isle of Wight.