King’s Lynn Stars saw their Elite League play-off hopes all but ended with a 51-41 defeat against Swindon at the Adrian Flux Arena.
The Roger Warnes Transport Stars slipped to their third straight loss on another disappointing evening.
The result leaves them 14 points off the all-important top four with just three meetings in hand – and team boss Rob Lyon admits their top four chances are extremely slim.
He was left hugely frustrated on a night where they were simply out-gated by a determined Robins’ side.
“It was disappointing and just not good enough,” Lyon conceded. “Four heat winners on your home track is not what you expect, and we were just beaten by a better side on the night.
“It just wasn’t good enough, and we need to be a lot, lot better than that. Our fans deserve better than that, but it’s hard to put your finger on why we were consistently out trapped on our home track again.
“We’re very unlikely to make the play-offs now, but we just have to keep trying to win some meetings to get some confidence and pride back into this team.
“It’s disappointing, but all we can do now is move on to Belle Vue next Wednesday and try to redeem the situation.”
After falling behind early on, the Stars recorded just four race wins and lacked the firepower to get themselves back into contention.
Returning No.1 Niels-Kristian Iversen was in the thick of the action but did not claim a heat win until he stormed clear alongside Chris Harris in the final race of the night.
Harris put in a typically determined display on a guest appearance, whilst young gun Josh Bailey scored his first Elite League points in heat nine as he made an encouraging Elite League debut.
German ace Kai Huckenbeck demonstrated plenty of promising signs, winning heat five in fine style, but he could only manage second place as he took King’s Lynn’s tactical ride in heat nine.
Lewis Kerr, deputising for Lewis Rose at reserve, roared to a convincing win in heat two but did not score again until heat 12.
Skipper Rory Schlein also started on a high but struggled to make a major impact as the night progressed whilst Troy Batchelor endured a tough night despite being involved in some exciting racing.
The Stars will be back in action at Belle Vue next Wednesday before hosting Wolverhampton at the Adrian Flux Arena next Thursday (7.30).
LYNN 41: Niels-Kristian Iversen 10+1, Chris Harris 9+1, Kai Huckenbeck 7, Rory Schlein 5, Troy Batchelor 4+2, Lewis Kerr 5, Josh Bailey 1+1.
SWINDON 51: Jason Doyle 12, Nick Morris 11, Rohan Tungate 7+1, Stefan Nielsen 7, Justin Sedgmen 6, Leigh Lanham 4+2, Josh Grajczonek 4+1.