Bears Euro victory but not without controversy

Bears, Ash and Justin Riley discuss the finer points of racing with dutchman Robert Emaus at the end of the night (Dan Moth)
Bears, Ash and Justin Riley discuss the finer points of racing with dutchman Robert Emaus at the end of the night (Dan Moth)

On Saturday night, The Bears travelled down to Hampshire to compete in the second leg contest between the UK’s Ringwood Raceway and Holland’s Emmen Raceway.

After the UK team upset the locals as well as the form book, by winning the away leg in Northern Holland, the return meeting was always going to be a spicy affair, and so it proved to be.

Ashley Riley focussed on the task ahead (Dan Moth)

Ashley Riley focussed on the task ahead (Dan Moth)

Being the high profile wreckers in the home team, The Bears were targets for the Dutch drivers seeking revenge, especially as they felt aggrieved by Bears captain Nigel Riley from the first leg.

With Nigel serving a two race suspension, the focus was on sons Justin and Ashley, with neither disappointing when it came to destroying opponents and entertaining the crowd.

The Bears will never take a backward step. Justin showed this first with a thunderous attack on a rival on the back straight, knowing that in turn it would leave him exposed to the Dutch attack fast approaching.

This was followed up in the next race with ace wrecker Ashley, tearing at speed into the rear quarter panel of Belgian, Gregory De Luyck. At the time there were cries of ‘foul’, but Ash’s response was that of a respectful driver.

I’m Glad he is ok. No way did I want to injure him, just break his axle.

Ashley Riley

“Greg’s initial shot could be declared illegal. The way I looked at it was, if he was willing to hit his rival through the doors with a yank that he was hard core enough to take a rear wheel shot.”

Ash continued, “I’m Glad he is ok. No way did I want to injure him, just break his axle.”

When Nigel appeared on track later in proceedings, as a ‘marked man’, the reaction was predictable.

As soon as the lights turned green he was spun into the wall. Just seconds later he was hit over the driver’s wheels, which being an underhand tactic did not impress the big man. With damaged sustained to his steering, from there he struggled.

Justin Riley launches an attack (Matt Howes)

Justin Riley launches an attack (Matt Howes)

Having got back out on to the track and hit an opponent, Nigel himself was hit twice in quick succession. Stranded in the car, a massive third hit had him pushed down the length of the back straight. All he could do was just wait for the resulting hits to come, which they did.

With attention paid to the team’s wreckers, John Swanbrough in his Jaguar stormed to three victories to secure a 191-46 win for Ringwood, and a 2 leg to nil result over the two contests.

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Revenge is sweet for a Dutch driver who gives Justin Riley a firm hit (Matt Howes)

Revenge is sweet for a Dutch driver who gives Justin Riley a firm hit (Matt Howes)

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