Speedway: Potters look to fine tune ahead of play-off bid
STOKE Easy Rider Potters continue their preparations for the National League play-offs with a trip to Rye House tomorrow.
It is the last chance for the Potters to hit top form before they visit near-neighbours Dudley in the first leg next Tuesday.
The return leg will be held at Loomer Road the following week, Tuesday, October 2, before Stoke wind up their league fixtures at King's Lynn 24 hours later.
The draw pitched Mildenhall with Isle of Wight in the other play-off tie.
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Stoke usually stage their home meetings on a Saturday, but have agreed with the Heathens to race in midweek to avoid any potential rider clashes with the Premier League.
Dudley duo Ashley Morris and Adam Roynon race for Workington in the second tier, with the date switch allowing both sides to field their full-strength line-ups.
"Dudley helped us out earlier in the season when they came to fill a gap in our fixture list back in July," said Stoke promoter Dave Tattum.
"We agreed that any play-off clashes would be staged on nights when there were no Premier League fixture clashes.
"Racing on consecutive Tuesday evenings means that both sets of supporters will get to see the play-off semi-final staged between two teams at full strength."
Stoke's two remaining league fixtures are academic, but allow the likes of Ben Reade and Ashley Birks the chance to get more track time under their belts in the Potters' quest for silverware.
And the duo will be keen to conquer Rye House's track as they make a return trip there on Saturday week for the National League Riders' Championship.
"I have raced there once already this season and scored five points which wasn't too bad, though it will be interesting to see how it goes on Saturday," said Reade.
"My form has remained fairly steady since I moved up in to the main body of the side and I'm feeling pretty good on the bike.
"It will be good to ride the track bearing the NLRC in mind, but this is a Stoke meeting and I just want to see the team do well.
"We had a poor weekend last Saturday and Sunday and this is the chance to pick up a bit of momentum."
Rye House missed out on reaching the play-offs following Isle of Wight's victory on Wednesday.
But they showed last week when they picked up seven points from a home win over Scunthorpe and then a big 41-48 away win at Loomer Road that they are a capable side.
Jason Garrity and Ben Morley are the star names in the Raiders' side, which has a strong emphasis on youth.
Connor Coles and Luke Chessell, alongside the likes of Shane Hazelden and James Sarjeant, appear part of their long-term plans.
Rye House: J Garrity, L Chessell, B Morley, S Hazelden, J Sarjeant, D Verge, C Coles.
Stoke: A Birks, R Andrews (r/r), T Atkin, B Reade, J Cockle, L Rumsey, L Carr.