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Redcar 43 Comets 47 (League Cup)
Photo by Dave Payne
Fri 20 May 2016 by Comets Press Office
The Comets claimed a crucial away victory at Redcar last night to put themselves in the driving seat for qualification for the semi-final stage of the League Cup.
In doing so they ended Redcar's chances in the competition while setting down a marker for the Newcastle Diamonds.

Everything now hinges on how the Diamonds fare in their two group matches against Redcar, firstly at home next Monday (23rd May) and then at Redcar on Thursday 2nd June.

The Comets went into the fixture knowing that a victory was essential if they were to give themselves a chance of progression and, after having their good start pegged back by the Bears, they came good in the latter stages to clinch victory in a pulsating Heat 15.

An opening heat 5-1 from Ricky Wells and Rasmus Jensen gave the Comets a dream start on what was clearly going to be a difficult night on a very slick track.

With rain threatening prior to start time any track watering had understandably been kept to an absolute minimum and the result was a hard slick track, which developed a clear 'blue groove' after the opening four heats with passing at a premium and any rider that ventured away from the 'blue groove' struggled to maintain their track position. The only rider that proved to be an exception to that was Redcar's David Bellego, who made the outside line work to good effect in his opening two rides.

A 4-2 from Matt Williamson and Adam Roynon put the Comets into a 9-3 lead before the Bears fought back to level the scores at 18-18 following a Bears 5-1 in an eventful Heat 6.

This saw Claus Vissing an unfortunate second lap faller when fellow-countryman Jacob Bukhave appeared to lock up in front of him. Then, on the final lap, third placed Adam Roynon fell, but got to his feet before pushing round for the remaining three-quarters of a lap to claim the odd point.

The scores remained locked together until heat 9 when a 5-1 for Redcar's Jonas B Andersen and Hugh Skidmore claimed a 5-1, with Claus retiring after suffering a mechanical problem on the third lap.

Then, with Heat 10 shared the Comets went into the interval four points down.

But, with Rasmus winning his second race of the night in heat 11, while Ricky picked up third place behind the previously unbeaten Bellego the Comets reduced their deficit to just two points before a 5-1 from Adam Roynon and Kenneth Hansen in Heat 11 put the Comets two points in front.

With Claus winning the re-run of Heat 13, after Bellego had been a first bend faller and earning an exclusion, with Ricky again coming home in third place the Comets lead was extended to four points with two heats remaining.

The opening lap of Heat 14 (see picture above) saw Mason and Adam seemingly set for a 5-1 before the hitherto unbeaten Jonas B Andersen picked them off to lead and then, as they entered turn three for the final time Lee Payne dived under Adam Roynon and clearly knocked him off, although not clearly enough to earn an exclusion as his third place was allowed to stand while Roynon and his machine lay sprawled across the track!

This made things very simple - a 3-3 in the final heat would be enough to give the Comets a vital away victory.

The Comets had choice of gates and opted for gates 2 and 4, with Ricky going from two and Rasmus from four.

A great start from Ricky saw him hit the front and, although briefly challenged by Bellego on lap two, he held on to win while Rasmus picked off Andersen with an inside move on the third lap to clinch a match-winning 4-2 and give the Comets a well deserved 47-43 victory and three vital League Cup match points.


REDCAR: Lasse Bjerre 8, Jacob Bukhave 4+2, Hugh Skidmore 3+1, Jonas B Andersen 12, David Bellego 10, Simon Nielsen 2, Lee Payne 4.

WORKINGTON: Ricky Wells 9+1, Rasmus Jensen 11+1, Kenneth Hansen 6+1, Mason Campton 6+2, Claus Vissing 5, Adam Roynon 6, Matt Williamson 4+1.

Referee: Darren Hartley.
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Last Updated :  Fri 20 May 2016, 07:24 UK
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Dave Payne, Adrian Randall