Hosts triumph in last-heat decider at Adrian Flux Arena
King's Lynn Stars 47 Swindon Robins 43
The Stars won a final-heat decider in this must-win Monday meeting at the Adrian Flux Arena but face an exit from the trophy.
The third-spot hosts needed to taste victory by more than six points and deny group leaders Swindon a consolation point in order to retain hopes of staying in this competition.
Home reserve Kasper Andersen was ruled out with an injury to his left hand sustained in Denmark, so well-known former Star Simon Lambert stepped in.
Meanwhile the visitors operated rider replacement for number two Dawid Lampart. This proved exclusively to be the Wajtknecht show (three points from four rides) for Swindon, who incidentally provided the victors from heats five to nine.
King's Lynn captain Robert Lambert beat 2017 world champion Jason Doyle by passing the Aussie on the second bend of the opening heat and Lambert’s partner Erik Riss finished third to post a home 4-2.
Michael Palm Toft confidently took the reserves’ race lead and with guest Lambert slotting into third, Lynn bagged a swift second heat advantage.
But the Abbey Stadium side levelled the scores with a 5-1 maximum success from Tobiasz Musielak and Adam Ellis. Immediately, the hosts replied in kind: Thomas Jorgensen took advantage of a second-bend slip by former Lynn rider Troy Batchelor to get in behind race winner and compatriot Michael Palm Toft.
Doyle comfortably won Heat 5 as fortunes swayed again and cut the lead to two.
After two shared heats, rider replacement Adam Ellis was excluded for going through the starting tapes which meant another appearance for the busy away reserve Zach Wajtknecht. The ex-British U19 champion – five outings in eight races – beat Riss and the score was 25-23 at halfway.
Riss and Robert Lambert lowered Musielak’s colours in Heat 10 as Lynn stretched out to 33-27.
Jorgensen almost beat Doyle, who passed the Dane on the Heat 11 final straight, while Jorgensen fell at the back in an unlucky race 13 as the Robins perched on successive 4-2’s to close matters at 40-38.
Fans picked Palm Toft/Riss; and Ellis/Doyle for the penultimate clash, won by Doyle with Lynn filling the middle positions to set up a final-heat decider.
This went the way of Lynn thanks to skipper Lambert beating Batchelor, while Jorgensen was third ahead of Musielak.
Stars: Robert Lambert 12+1, Erik Riss 8+2, Thomas Jorgensen 7+1, Lewis Kerr 4, Ty Proctor 2+1, Michael Palm Toft 11+3, Simon Lambert (guest) 3. Fastest time: Michael Palm Toft, Heat 4, 58.47secs.
Robins: Jason Doyle 14, R/R Dawid Lampart, Troy Batchelor 12, Adam Ellis 4+1, Tobiasz Musielak 7, Zach Wajtknecht 6, James Shanes 0. Fastest time: Troy Batchelor, Heat 6, 58.31secs.
Lynn now face four successive away fixtures and are not at home until May 20 when they host Poole in this competition.
Stars skipper Robert Lambert, fresh from retaining the British U21 title, has made it into the starting trio in the Great Britain side for the Monster Energy FIM Speedway of Nations alongside Tai Woffinden and Craig Cook on Saturday May 11.