King's Lynn Stars see unbeaten home record ended by Swindon Robins
King’s Lynn Stars 39 Swindon Robins 51
The Stars’ walking wounded lost their unbeaten home league record in a tight penultimate home meeting of the season on Monday against top spot-chasing Swindon.
The Robins went ahead in Heat 11 (they led for one heat earlier on) and once Lynn’s Erik Riss lost the lead in the following race the visitors made it two successive 2-4 results to take a grip.
Heat 13 was awarded a Swindon 5-1 with Craig Cook excluded for a final-bend fall when his engine failed, and ex-Star Troy Batchelor had to lay his bike down to make the result a formality at 35-43.
Lynn boss Peter Schroeck responded with inserting Norwich-born skipper Robert Lambert as a tactical sub. He and Riss began on a 5-1 but the German’s bike packed up to give Swindon victory.
Riss suffered mechanical failure again in Heat 15 leaving Lambert behind away spearhead Jason Doyle and Batchelor.
Lynn were again without Dane Michael Palm Toft who was involved in another crash while on Championship duty with Redcar at Newcastle on Sunday and was taken to hospital with a T10 vertebrae injury.
Poultec Stars brought in former vice-captain Ty Proctor to guest with Norfolk’s Ryan Kinsley in at No.8 as a precaution.
Stars operated rider replacement (r/r) for shoulder injury victim Thomas Jorgensen, who was watching at the Adrian Flux Arena stadium, while Lambert – racing in this weekend’s Cardiff Grand Prix – returned after missing last week’s loss at Poole.
Lambert defeated former world champion Doyle in the opening race with Proctor third edging out Adam Ellis for a 4-2.
Lewis Kerr, after being warned to remain still at the start, won the reserves’ outing in a shared 3-3 heat.
Away number three Rasmus Jensen was excluded for bursting the tapes and was replaced by Ellis Perks in a twice-restarted Heat 3, won by Riss.
Cook completed a quartet of home heat winners by bursting between Aussie Batchelor and Claus Vissing coming onto the first straight as Lynn led 13-11.
But Doyle and Ellis, who flew past r/r Kerr and then Riss, posted the first maximum to take the lead. A Lambert-led 4-2 in beating danger-man Batchelor meant Lynn immediately levelled, and Cook won the next in a 3-3.
Ellis overtook Heat 8 early leader Proctor on the second straight as the scores were deadlocked 24-24 at midway. Batchelor bested Riss and Kerr – on his second r/r of the night – to bag his first victory.
Only unbeaten rider so far Lambert passed Jensen to complete his hat-trick just before the short Heat 10 interval (30-30).
Cook beat Doyle to the gate but the latter surged past as Swindon broke the deadlock to lead by two.
Lynn gained just 1+1 points from ‘r/r’ – Jorgensen usually gets more than that in Heat 14 alone.
With the way results fell last night, it’s pretty certain Lynn will have to race their final meeting of the campaign on Thursday (19) at home to Poole.
Lynn: Robert Lambert 14, Ty Proctor 4, Erik Riss 8, Thomas Jorgensen R/R, Craig Cook 8, Lewis Kerr 5+2, Nicklas Porsing 0.
Fastest time: Lambert, Heat 1, 58.37 seconds.
Swindon: Jason Doyle 13+1, Adam Ellis 6+1, Rasmus Jensen 6+1, Tobiasz Musielak 7+1, Troy Batchelor 11+2, Ellis Perks 3+2, Claus Vissing 5+1.
Fastest time: Doyle, Heat 5, 59.33secs.