Poole picked up a consolation point on their mini-away tour first leg on Monday night at Belle Vue, a result that confirmed the Aces as top spot finishers ahead of the crucial play-offs

For the second time in as many weeks there was an even feel about the second half of this affair, with six of the last 8 races being shared points-wise, and it was Poole that had the advantage in both the other two including a dramatic maximum heat score from Australians Rohan Tungate (guesting for the skipper Hans Andersen) and number one Chris Holder who had only been headed home once, that in the opening heat by his counterpart Matej Zagar.

Whilst Holder went on to deliver an imperious performance the Aces GP rider struggled for the rest of the meeting and could only add a further point to his night's work.

The Pirates worked their opponents hard despite that early setback but had to deploy Holder as a tactical option in heat 6 to stem the tide of Aces' 4-2 advantages. It worked majestically and despite immense efforts from returning Buczkowski to try and split the Aces' guest of Patrick Hougaard and skipper Scott Nicholls, Poole could only pull back three of the 10 point deficit.

The margin went back into double figures when good gating efforts from Kurtz and Tungate were negated when they went too wide on the opening turn only Tungate able to capitalise when Zagar made a mistake on the third lap.

The Pirates breakthrough came in heat 13 when Holder stormed round Craig Cook who was embroiled in a tough battle with Buczkowski who moved into second. But Cook's persistence paid off with a last gasp pass to limit Poole to just a 4-2 and seven points splitting the two sides.

To deny the Aces a guaranteed top spot finish the Pirates required maximum heat scores to close out on and heat 14 was heading to the first of those until Brady Kurtz packed up whilst leading. It left Poole needing an advantage for that consolation point and in an epic battle, led by Tungate, the Pirates delivered with Chris Holder and Craig Cook slugging out a wheel to wheel endeavour, Holder making the telling pass right on the line to end with a Poole 5-1.

M. Zagar 3,1,0,R=4
S. Worrall 1,2',1',3,0=7+2
P. Hougaard 1,2,1',2=6+1
S. Nicholls 3,1',2,1'=7+2
C. Cook 3,3,2,2,1=11
R. Worrall 0,1,3,2,0=6
J. Jacobs 3,1',3=7+1
C. Holder 2,6,3,3,2'=16+1
A. Ellis 0,0,0=0
R. Tungate 2,2,2,3,3=12
B. Kurtz 2,0,3,R=5
K. Buczkowski 0,1',1=2+1
B. Pedersen 1',1,3,0,2=7+1
K. Newman 2,0,0,0,1'=3+1

Ht 1 M. Zagar C. Holder S. Worrall A. Ellis 4-2 (4-2) (61.3)
Ht 2 J. Jacobs K. Newman B. Pedersen R. Worrall 3-3 (7-5) (61.4)
Ht 3 C. Cook R. Tungate P. Hougaard K. Newman 4-2 (11-7) (61.3)
Ht 4 S. Nicholls B. Kurtz R. Worrall K. Newman 4-2 (15-9) (61.8)
Ht 5 R. Worrall S. Worrall B. Pedersen A. Ellis 5-1 (20-10) (61.9)
Ht 6 C. Holder (TR) P. Hougaard S. Nicholls K. Buczkowski 3-6 (23-16) (61.7)
Ht 7 C. Cook R. Tungate M. Zagar B. Kurtz 4-2 (27-18) (61.3)
Ht 8 B. Pedersen S. Nicholls J. Jacobs A. Ellis 3-3 (30-21) (62)
Ht 9 B. Kurtz R. Worrall S. Worrall K. Newman 3-3 (33-24) (61.3)
Ht 10 C. Holder C. Cook P. Hougaard B. Pedersen 3-3 (36-27) (61.8)
Ht 11 S. Worrall R. Tungate K. Buczkowski M. Zagar 3-3 (39-30) (62.7)
Ht 12 J. Jacobs B. Pedersen K. Newman R. Worrall 3-3 (42-33) (62.8)
Ht 13 C. Holder C. Cook K. Buczkowski M. Zagar (Rtd) 2-4 (44-37) (62.4)
Ht 14 R. Tungate P. Hougaard S. Nicholls B. Kurtz (Rtd) 3-3 (47-40) (62.6)
Ht 15 R. Tungate C. Holder C. Cook S. Worrall 1-5 (48-45) (63)

Referee Chris Durno
Gates: Poole. win toss and take 1&3, Swindon took 1&3 in heat 15
BELLE VUE 3 league point POOLE 1 league point


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