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King’s Lynn Stars 53 Somerset Rebels 37: Troy Batchelor leads the way as Stars shine in season opener

PUBLISHED: 22:37 05 April 2017 | UPDATED: 00:20 06 April 2017

King's Lynn Stars' Troy Batchelor won heat nine in some style. Picture: Ian Burt

King's Lynn Stars' Troy Batchelor won heat nine in some style. Picture: Ian Burt

Archant 2017

King’s Lynn welcomed in a new era for the club by brushing aside Premiership newcomers Somerset 53-37 at the Adrian Flux Arena.

King's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured is Lewis Rose. Picture: Ian BurtKing's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured is Lewis Rose. Picture: Ian Burt

There was plenty of focus on former world champion Chris Holder on his Stars debut, but this was a solid all-round performance from Dale Allitt’s men.

And whilst there will be tougher tests to come, you cannot ignore the impressive skills of the revamped King’s Lynn side.

Stars were handed the perfect start when Aussie ace Rohan Tungate fell in the opening heat and Holder teamed up with Lewis Rose for a maximum.

In front of a bumper crowd, Lynn went on to dominate the meeting with Troy Batchelor – who spent last season fighting his way back from shoulder surgery – laying a marker down with a string of race wins.

King's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured is Stars skipper Robert Lambert. Picture: Ian BurtKing's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured is Stars skipper Robert Lambert. Picture: Ian Burt

Batchelor was at his brilliant best and romped to a 13-point haul to delight of the Stars fans, who returned in big numbers after a frustrating 2016.

Stars co-promoter Rob Lyon said: “It was a really pleasing night in so many ways. The team were solid, which is good to see, it was always important to kick the season off in a positive way and the boys have done that.

“I’d also like to thank the fans, we had a very healthy opening crowd and we hope they continue to support us for the rest of the season. A pleasing night.”

King’s Lynn continue their Premiership programme at home to Rye House on Good Friday – but the Young Stars face reigning champions Birmingham in a National League clash at home next Wednesday.

King's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured is Chris Holder. Picture: Ian BurtKing's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured is Chris Holder. Picture: Ian Burt

Holder, the 2012 world champion, is excited ahead of what he hopes will be a successful season after his switch from Poole.

“I’ve got a bit of a fresh start with King’s Lynn this year, and it seems to have been a long winter so I’m just excited to get back riding my bike,” Holder said. “You always go in with high expectations to do well, and you want to be running up the front.”

King’s Lynn Stars 53: Troy Batchelor 13+1, Robert Lambert 10, Lewis Rose 9+2, Chris Holder 7, Kai Huckenbeck 6+1, Nicklas Porsing 5+1, Josh Bailey 3.

Somerset Rebels 37: Patrick Hougaard 12+1, Charles Wright 9, Paul Starke 7, Jake Allen 6, Jan Graversen 2+1, Rohan Tungate 1, Josh Grajczonek 0.

King's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured is mic man Gavin Caney. Picture: Ian BurtKing's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured is mic man Gavin Caney. Picture: Ian Burt

King's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured is Stars skipper Robert Lambert. Picture: Ian BurtKing's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured is Stars skipper Robert Lambert. Picture: Ian Burt

King's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured is Troy Batchelor flying in heat five. Picture: Ian BurtKing's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured is Troy Batchelor flying in heat five. Picture: Ian Burt

King's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured at the gate is Chris Holder. Picture: Ian BurtKing's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured at the gate is Chris Holder. Picture: Ian Burt

King's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured at the gate is Chris Holder. Picture: Ian BurtKing's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured at the gate is Chris Holder. Picture: Ian Burt

King's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured is (C) Stars skipper Robert Lambert. Picture: Ian BurtKing's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured is (C) Stars skipper Robert Lambert. Picture: Ian Burt

King's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured is Robert Lambert after his bike packed up in heat seven. Picture: Ian BurtKing's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured is Robert Lambert after his bike packed up in heat seven. Picture: Ian Burt

King's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured is Lewis Rose on the gas in heat 10. Picture: Ian BurtKing's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured is Lewis Rose on the gas in heat 10. Picture: Ian Burt

King's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured is Stars No.1 Chris Holder. Picture: Ian BurtKing's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured is Stars No.1 Chris Holder. Picture: Ian Burt

King's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured is Kai Huckenbeck (6) flying out of the gate in heat 14. Picture: Ian BurtKing's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured is Kai Huckenbeck (6) flying out of the gate in heat 14. Picture: Ian Burt

King's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured is Robert Lambert walking back to the pits after the spill in heat 15. Picture: Ian BurtKing's Lynn Stars v Somerset Rebels. Pictured is Robert Lambert walking back to the pits after the spill in heat 15. Picture: Ian Burt

Troy Batchelor won heat nine in some style. Picture: Ian BurtTroy Batchelor won heat nine in some style. Picture: Ian Burt

Troy Batchelor won heat nine in some style. Picture: Ian BurtTroy Batchelor won heat nine in some style. Picture: Ian Burt

Robert Lambert and (R) Chris Holder with their Best Pairs trophy. Picture: Ian BurtRobert Lambert and (R) Chris Holder with their Best Pairs trophy. Picture: Ian Burt

Chris Holder & (R) Lewis Rose. Picture: Ian BurtChris Holder & (R) Lewis Rose. Picture: Ian Burt

Chris Holder & (R) Lewis Rose in heat one. Picture: Ian BurtChris Holder & (R) Lewis Rose in heat one. Picture: Ian Burt

The riders on the parade lap. Picture: Ian BurtThe riders on the parade lap. Picture: Ian Burt

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