King's Lynn go down fighting in Premiership defeat at Belle Vue
King's Lynn went desperately close to another away point at Belle Vue before going down 49-41 at the National Speedway Stadium.
The Minors & Brady Stars had scored on their last visit to Manchester but were edged out on this occasion, largely due to the brilliance of Aces No.1 Dan Bewley who completed a 15-point maximum.
Trump card for the Stars without a doubt was Rising Star reserve Connor Mountain who piled up 13+2 from seven rides, including three race wins, in his best-ever Premiership display.
And several battling performances elsewhere in the team ensured Alex Brady’s side contributed much to an entertaining evening of racing.
Mountain and Kasper Andersen put the Stars into an early lead when the Dane raced around Tom Brennan to complete a 5-1 in Heat 2, although that was quickly pegged back as Erik Riss lost out to first Steve Worrall and then Charles Wright in Heat 3.
Mountain then stunned the home crowd by going clear of Brady Kurtz in Heat 4 having come into the race after Thomas Jorgensen had been penalised for movement at the start.
The combination of Bewley and Jye Etheridge carded two mid-meeting 5-1s for the home side as the Aces took control, although Ben Barker rode strongly to edge out Jye Etheridge in Heat 8 as the Stars collected a 4-2.
Barker, though, missed out to Brennan in Heat 11 which enabled the Aces to go ten points up, and Brady’s move to bring Jorgensen into Heat 12 as a tactical substitute was thwarted by home skipper Steve Worrall.
Jorgensen broke the tapes in Heat 13, so Mountain came in again – and once more he got the better of Kurtz after initially tussling with Bewley, with the Belle Vue man eventually getting the better of Stars guest Craig Cook for a shared race.
Mountain headed up a 4-2 in a terrific Heat 14 where all four riders were in contention, and that meant they needed a race advantage from the last race for a league point.
It looked possible as Cook hit the front with Jorgensen holding third place – but Bewley was not to be denied his full house, and he swept through on the inside going into the last lap.
Brady said: “It’s a bit like a broken record really with battling performances and trying really hard, but everyone gave it their all and Connor was absolutely outstanding.
“He’s been unlucky to be a victim of the tactical substitute ride in most meetings we’ve had, but tonight he deserved his seven rides and I’m really pleased for him.
“Overall I’m proud of the boys, and we just couldn’t quite get over the line to get that point.
“Dan Bewley was excellent for them, but Cookie was fantastic for us, I was really pleased with his effort and I told him as much too.”
The Stars have two matches to come to complete their season, starting with the trip to title contenders Peterborough next Thursday (September 23).
Belle Vue Aces 49: Dan Bewley 15, Steve Worrall 10+1, Brady Kurtz 8, Jye Etheridge 6+2, Charles Wright 5+1, Tom Brennan 5+1, Theo Pijper 0.
King's Lynn Stars 41: Connor Mountain 13+2, Craig Cook 9+1, Thomas Jorgensen 6+1, Ben Barker 5, Lewis Kerr 4, Erik Riss 2+1, Kasper Andersen 2+1.