Speedway: Connor Mountain climbs to take Top Gun honours

James Shanes: Picture by Taylor Lanning
James Shanes: Picture by Taylor Lanning
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Connor Mountain finished with a flourish to pinch the Plumco Top Gun from under the nose of old hand Simon Lambert at Sheffield.

Lambert had showed the rookies how it should be done by dropping only one point en route to the final, that to closest rival Nathan Greaves from the gate in the opener.

The King’s Lynn and Peterborough charger had it all his own way from there but Mountain roared to three straight wins from the gate in the last heat, the semi-final and then the showpiece.

Passing had been at a premium until American ace Max Ruml’s breathtaking dive beyond Kyle Bickley to win heat six.

Greaves was perhaps fortunate to pick up two points from the eighth having caught the back wheel of Josh McDonald, pushing the Australian to the back.

Sheffield’s James Shanes (below) had two second places to his name when he retired while leading heat 10 to all but end his hopes of topping the rostrum.

Ruml then produced the pass of the night, roaring right up to the fence to get by Kye Thomson and finish second behind Greaves.

Lambert endured a ding-dong battle with McDonald which saw each rider lead heat 13 several times before Shanes passed Danny Phillips to claim his first chequered flag.

Greaves stayed level with Lambert going into the final round of races by trumping Danny Ayres but Lambert held off a strong last-bend surge from Cooper Riordan.

Mountain restricted Greaves to second from the gate in the final qualifier before dominating the decisive heats.

SCORERS: Simon Lambert 14, Nathan Greaves 13, Connor Mountain 12, Josh McDonald 10, Kye Thomsen 10, Zaine Kennedy 9, Cooper Riordan 8, James Shanes 8, Danny Ayres 7, Kyle Bickley 6, Max Ruml 6, Joe Lawlor 6, Danny Phillips 5, Josh Coyne 3, Tom Woolley 2, Jamie Halder 1.

SEMI-FINAL: Mountain, Kennedy, Thomson, McDonald.

GRAND FINAL: Mountain, Kennedy, Lambert, Greaves.