Monday October 28, 2019
CRADLEY captain Max Clegg finally won the prestigious Golden Hammer event on an emotional night at Monmore.

After finishing on the rostrum three times in the past four years, the Yorkshireman had been left frustrated by a series of close calls.

But he entered his name into the record books alongside the likes of home favourites Steve Worrall and Lewis Blackbird in the modern era to send the Heathens faithful home with a smile on their faces.

Clegg stormed to a 15-point maximum in the qualifying heats, before blocking the run of former team-mate Tom Perry in the opening bends of the Grand Final to take the chequered flag.

Said Clegg: “I’ve been waiting for this meeting all season and I’m chuffed to finally get the win.

“I’ve been in this meeting a fair few times now and I’ve never managed to finish on top.

“I was making good starts all night though and that worked in my favour.

“I’m really pleased to win it at last and it’s nice to end the season on a high.

“I’ve enjoyed myself this year; the team did fantastic to get through to the play-offs and it’s been fun riding alongside these boys.

“Like I say I feel like I’ve had a really good season and to end on such a high stands me in good stead for next year.”

In another fitting moment, Clegg was joined on the rostrum by Nathan Greaves and Tom Perry - all of whom were members of the Heathens’ formidable 2014 title winning side.

Greaves recovered from mechanical gremlins in his fourth qualifying ride to pick up the three points he needed in his last outing.

Meanwhile Perry improved race-by-race and quick starts in Heats 12 and 15 helped him on his way to crucial back-to-back wins.

Nathan Stoneman crashed out of the Grand Final after being in the thick of the action all night long, with 2018 National Trophy team member Jason Edwards a fourth rider to finish the regular races on 10-points, but a four way tie saw him miss out on countback.

Former Heathen Joe Lawlor was the other key contender part way through, dropping just one point from his opening three rides until an alarming lift and tumble in Heat 11 saw him ruled out the remainder of the event with damaged machinery.

Max Clegg 15, Nathan Stoneman 10, Nathan Greaves 10, Tom Perry 10, Jason Edwards 10, Ben Morley 9, Joe Lawlor 8, Luke Harris 6, Richard Andrews 4, James Chattin 3, Danny Halsey 2, Tom Spencer 1.
FINAL: Clegg, Greaves, Perry, Stoneman (f/exc).

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