Berwick 48 Comets 41 (PL Play-off)
Photo by Dave PayneSat 11 Oct 2014
A last heat 5-1 for Berwick saw the Bandits take victory in a closely-contested PL Play-off clash (and first leg of the Border Trophy) at Shielfield Park tonight.
Going into the last race the Bandits held a slender 43-40 lead over the Comets, meaning that we needed a 5-1 from heat 15 to win on the night; but with the Bandits having the pick of the gates, which saw them choose the far superior traps 2 and 4, it was always going to be tough for Ricky and our excellent guest Ulrich Ostergaard.
Unfortunately that's the way it turned out as the very much in-form ex-Comet Kevin Doolan and the hard-riding Dane Claus Vissing flew from the gate to lead all the way to the chequered flag and seal victory for the home side.
That gave the Bandits a 48-41 victory and with it all three Play-off group points as well as a seven-point advantage going into the second leg of the Border Trophy.
Nevertheless, it had been another typically hard-fought contest as clashes between these two sides often tend to be, with the Comets getting off to the best possible start by taking maximum points from the opening heat through Ulrich and Ricky.
However, two successive 5-1's for the Bandits saw Berwick edge ahead before a second 5-1 of the match from Ulrich and Ricky in heat 5 levelled the scores. But, the Bandits were able to edge ahead in the next two heats, opening up an eight-point advantage. However, an excellent tape to flag success for Rene in heat 10, with Doolan a distant second and Mason back in third, reduced the Comets deficit to six points before a profitable heat 11 saw the Comets pairing of Ulrich and Ricky claim a 5-0 after both Bandits had fallen on the opening lap and were excluded from the re-run - much to the amazement of the Bandits management, who felt very hard done by.
However, that closed the gap to just a single point, which is the way it remained following the re-run of heat 12, after a very hard fall for the Berwick skipper Matthew Wethers as he exited turn two on a wide line in last place on the opening lap.
The Bandits took a 4-2 from heat 13 as Vissing inflicted the first defeat of the night on his fellow-Dane Ulrich Ostergaard while a shared heat 14 set up the last heat decider to bring down the curtain on the Bandits 2014 season at Shielfield Park.
BERWICK BANDITS 48: Kevin Doolan 15, Claus Vissing 12+1, Alex Edberg 9, David Bellego 5, Steen Jensen 4+2, Matthew Wethers (c) 3+1, R/R for Matej Kus.
WORKINGTON COMETS 41: Ulrich Ostergaard (G) 12, Rene Bach (c) 8, Simon Lambert 7+1, Ricky Wells 6+3, Kyle Howarth 4+1, Mason Campton 3+2, Joe Jacobs 1.
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Last Updated : Sun 12 Oct 2014, 10:21 UK