King's Lynn skipper seals derby win over Peterborough with stunning move
Lynn Stars 47 Peterborough Panthers 43
A stunning move by new captain Josh Pickering earned King’s Lynn Stars a 47-43 winning start to their home campaign in a last-heat decider versus local rivals Peterborough in the League Cup tonight.
In a close derby clash, Pickering made a brilliant Heat 15 manoeuvre on Ulrich Ostergaard going into the first straight, eventually followed by team-mate Niels-Kristian Iversen to secure the hosts' fourth 5-1 maximum of the night.
A restarted opening race, with all four riders reinstated, had seen Iversen collide with replacement rider Ostergaard who the visitors nominated because ex-Lynn racer Michael Palm Toft was absent with concussion.
Palm Toft had picked up this injury when the Minors & Brady Stars began 2022 on Easter Monday by winning 48-42 at the Panthers.
Ostergaard hit the front and Iversen and Thomas Jorgensen looked set to make it an even 3-3 before the experienced skipper Scott Nicholls passed the latter on the final lap - and early advantage Peterborough.
Richie Worrall's reserves race victory plus third spot by Jack Thomas ensured Lynn immediately levelled.
Ostergaard won again ahead of Lynn's new captain Pickering to edge Peterborough in front; while Thomas and Richard Lawson then trailed Chris Harris to add a shared result.
West Norfolk ace Lewis Kerr and Pickering bagged the first 5-1 maximum of the evening to put Lynn 16-14 up.
Peterborough straight away reversed this via Harris and Benjamin Basso while Iversen retired at the midway point.
Already an away trump card, Ostergaard completed his hat-trick in a shared Heat 7.
After track grading, Nicholls was excluded for touching the tapes and Basso replaced him. This worked in Peterborough's favour as Basso headed Jorgensen in a 2-4 result to leave the scores 22-26 at the halfway stage.
Pickering's first home win as skipper and Kerr hammered a 5-1 to level matters and lower Harris's colours.
Key visitor Basso took his third ride in a row and beat the Jorgensen/Iversen middle pairing with Ostergaard's run at an end.
"R/r" Harris headed the Rich duo of Worrall and Lawson in another 3-3 deadlock.
Worrall replaced reserve partner Thomas in Heat 12 in a masterstroke by Stars team boss Alex Brady, heading Pickering in great team riding for Lynn's third maximum.
Nicholls was the final "r/r'" in the heat leader battle where Lawson was excluded for causing the away skipper's stoppage. Iversen crucially overtook Harris to win the re-run.
The drama wasn't over as Kerr hit the penultimate race's tapes and Thomas replaced him. Worrall led from the start but was passed by both winner Basso, then Hans Andersen, for the Panthers' second 5-1 to leave the scores 42-all with a race remaining.
Pickering and Iversen lined-up for Lynn, Ostergaard and Harris for the away side in a superb nip-and-tuck finale decided by the Lynn duo.
Thus Lynn landed their first piece of 2022 silverware.
This week’s derbies with the Panthers doubled up as the Colin Pratt Memorial Trophy, with the aggregate winners presented with the silverware on Thursday in honour of the latterly West Norfolk-based close friend of Lynn owners the Chapman family and a former rider, manager and promoter who passed away last year.
Lynn Stars: Niels-Kristian Iversen 8+2, Thomas Jorgensen 5, Josh Pickering (capt) 12+2, Lewis Kerr 5+1, Richard Lawson 4+2, Richie Worrall 10+1, Jack Thomas 3.
Peterborough Panthers: Michael Palm Toft rider replacement, Scott Nicholls (capt) 3+1, Ulrich Ostergaard 11, Hans Andersen 3+1, Chris Harris 11, Benjamin Basso 14+1, Jordan Palin 1.
Fastest time: Harris, 59.78 seconds, Heat 6.
Referee: Wayne Jarvis.