ASTLEY and Tyldesley Cycle Speedway Club took on Bury in a Northern League match at Gin Pit on Sunday. A&T were rocked by the absence of top rider Darek Kurkowski, who has returned to Poland after recently losing his job.

Bury took the lead in heat three when Ben Dickenson suffered the first of his two race exclusions.

The visitors moved 10 points ahead after an exclusion to A&T skipper Remi Burchardt in heat seven and were always in control after that.

Despite A&T’s best efforts, Bury eventually ran out winners 99-78.

Best for A&T was Dariusz Pilas, who lost just once while Burchardt had four wins out of his five races.

A dramatic second-team match saw A&T throw away a comfortable eight-point lead at the halfway stage.

The turning points were when Bury pulled back points after a fall by reserve Stefan Whitelegg in heat eight and then another exclusion to Dickenson in the last race.

In the re-run, Bury looked set to win the match but a great ride by A&T’s Luke Jamson saw him pull off a last-bend pass to take the race win and ensure that the match was drawn 59-59.

Jamson was best for A&T with 14 points, while Dickenson and Joel Partington each scored 12.

Joel Partington was the winner of the opening round of the North West Go-Race Grand Prix Series, winning all four races to score 16 points.

Second place went to Adam Watson, on 14 points, while four riders tied for third place after scoring 10 points each.

On Sunday, A&T stage the opening round of the Northern Grand Prix and Fours League Series at Gin Pit. First race is at noon.