NEWPORT Cycle Speedway team suffered their first league defeat in 18 months in a South and South Wales regional league fixture at Swindon, going down 92-85.

The much improved Wiltshire team have been boosted this year by the signings of world veteran champion Steve Harris and Welsh international Neil Power, both fine additions to the team.

An early exclusion to Newport's in-form Nicky Evans gave the home team a good start, but newport bounced back through two wins from Carmichael and one apiece from Davies and Sidwick.

The Swindon track was producing good fast racing, which helped the Evans/Rudman pairing to a maximum heat win to give the Welsh team a five-point interval lead.

The second half didn't go well for Newport, however, with riders falling and suffering exclusions and that proved costly with the home team running out winners by seven points in the end.

Newport's Chris Davies was praised after getting out of his sick bed and scoring a creditable nine points and young Adam Bennett once again impressed.

Newport now turn their attention this Sunday to the Elite League when they face Sheffield at Newport International Sports Village. Tapes up at 2pm.