PIRATES CHRISTMAS MARKET STALL IN THE DOLPHIN C...
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Poole Ready Power Pirates retained the Elite Shield despite their 46-43 defeat at King's Lynn and losing the services of number one Chris Holder with a wrist injury.
Holder was one of a number of riders who were caught out by track conditions early on and although he attempted a second ride he had to pull up within a lap and a half.
But the Pirates, already a man down due to Kacper Gomolski's commitments in Poland and having drawn in Adam Ellis to cover for the injured Kyle Newman, were able to respond to the task in hand and preciously protected their advantage from Wednesday's home leg.
Poole boss Matt Ford had mixed emotions about the outcome "of course I'm delighted to retain the Elite Shield. We are hungry for any silverware at Poole and once you've won a trophy you really don't want to hand it back. But this has come at a cost, with us losing Kyle (Newman) last night and now Chris (Holder) who aggravated his wrist problems. He is suffering from a dead wrist right now and that is a bit of a concern and because he couldn't feel comfortable on the bike we had to pull him out of the meeting unfortunately. We wish him all the best and hopefully it won't prove too serious."
The driving forces behind the Pirates' performance were skipper Maciej Janowski (12+1) and the highly impressive baker's dozen scorer Dakota North whilst Dave Watt weighed in with 7 and Ellis matched that total.
Poole trailed after conceding an opening heat 5-1 when Holder had his third turn fall, North having gone down previously on the first bend but was able to remount, but two heats later came a match levelling 5-1 response from former Lynn riders Janowksi and Watt in a re-run heat 3 due to Schlein grounding it in a similar position to where Holder came unstuck first time of asking.
Adam Ellis reared awkwardly in heat 4 and took Nicklas Porsing with him, the Lynn rider subsequently being withdrawn from the meeting as a precautionary measure leaving the Stars to invoke the Immediate Rider Replacement facility. But a fall for his stand-in, Lewis Kerr allowed first leg hero Paul Starke to gain two points in a 3-2 advantage to the Stars.
That single point difference on the night remained until Iversen and Bjerre rammed in a 5-1 in heat 7 and the Pirates looked set to redress that two heats later when Ellis led from the off. But a battling ride from Lambert saw him split the Pirates as they approached the finishing line and whilst North was just able to hold on, Ellis got caught and Poole had to settle for a 4-2 advantage.
North was out again in heat 10 and he produced an excellent ride to fend off Schlein and Bjerre and with back to back 4-2 advantages going the Pirates way by the end of 12 heats they found themselves marginally ahead on the night and time was rapidly running out for the Norfolk side to claw back the aggregate deficit.
Iversen and Bjerre though lowered Janowski's colours for the only time of the night in heat 13, ironically though, the Poole skipper's point was enough to mathematically keep the Shield at Wimborne Road, and then Lynn's skipper Rory Schlein's winnig ride guaranteed a win on the night for the Stars. But Poole still weren't done and it took a good ride from Iversen to eventually get the better of Dakota North to deny the Pirates a closing 5-1.
|King's Lynn 46|
|N. Iversen 3,2',2,3,2=12+1|
|R. Lambert 2',1',3,2,R=8+2|
|R. Schlein FD,2,2,3=7|
|N. Porsing =0|
|K. Bjerre 1,3,1',2',0=7+2|
|L. Kerr 2,0,1',2,1=6+1|
|A. Morris 1',3,2,0,0,R=6+1|
|C. Holder FD,R=0|
|D. North 1,3,2,3,3,1=13|
|D. Watt 3,1,1,2=7|
|R. Replacement =0|
|M. Janowski 2',3,3,1,3=12+1|
|P. Starke 0,2,0,1',0,1,0=4+1|
|A. Ellis 3,FD,0,1,3,0=7|
|Ht 1 N. Iversen R. Lambert D. North C. Holder (Fell d/q) 5-1 (5-1) (60.94)|
|Ht 2 A. Ellis L. Kerr A. Morris P. Starke 3-3 (8-4) (62.96)|
|Ht 3 D. Watt M. Janowski K. Bjerre R. Schlein (Fell d/q) 1-5 (9-9) (61.23)|
|Ht 4 A. Morris P. Starke L. Kerr A. Ellis (Fell d/q) 3-2 (12-11) (62.68)|
|Ht 5 D. North A. Morris R. Lambert P. Starke 3-3 (15-14) (61.31)|
|Ht 6 M. Janowski R. Schlein L. Kerr C. Holder (Rtd) 3-3 (18-17) (60.75)|
|Ht 7 K. Bjerre N. Iversen D. Watt A. Ellis 5-1 (23-18) (61.63)|
|Ht 8 R. Lambert D. North P. Starke A. Morris 3-3 (26-21) (60.94)|
|Ht 9 D. North R. Lambert A. Ellis A. Morris 2-4 (28-25) (61.81)|
|Ht 10 D. North R. Schlein K. Bjerre P. Starke 3-3 (31-28) (61.63)|
|Ht 11 M. Janowski N. Iversen D. Watt R. Lambert (Rtd) 2-4 (33-32) (61.75)|
|Ht 12 A. Ellis L. Kerr P. Starke A. Morris (Rtd) 2-4 (35-36) (62.41)|
|Ht 13 N. Iversen K. Bjerre M. Janowski P. Starke 5-1 (40-37) ()|
|Ht 14 R. Schlein D. Watt L. Kerr A. Ellis 4-2 (44-39) ()|
|Ht 15 M. Janowski N. Iversen D. North K. Bjerre 2-4 (46-43) ()|
|Referee Phil Griffin|
|Gates: King's Lynn won the toss and took 1&3 in heat 1.|
Picture: STEVE HONE
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