King's Lynn Stars 45 Somerset Rebels 45: Stars can't find a silver lining to historic season as Rebels take honours on aggregate
PUBLISHED: 22:12 18 October 2018
Matthew Usher Photography
King's Lynn's historic season ended in disappointment last night as they were defeated in the Knockout Cup final.
King’s Lynn’s historic season ended in disappointment last night as they were defeated in the Knockout Cup Final.
A 45-45 second leg draw at the Adrian Flux Arena meant the Stars ran out silver medalists for a second week running after play-off heartache against Poole last Wednesday.
Despite enjoying one of the club’s best ever seasons, topping the top flight regular standings for the first time in their 53-year existence, the Stars were left with no silverware to show for their efforts.
The damage was done away from home in the first leg on Wednesday as again a 16-point deficit left Dale Allitt’s side with way too much to do.
And any slim hope they had soon evaporated as Somerset dominated early on.
Stars skipper Robert Lambert piled the pressure on 2017 World Champion Jason Doyle in the opening heat before the Somerset man held on to lead a shared race.
But the visitors soon extended their lead to 24 on aggregate with three straight advantages courtesy of quick starts from Nico Covatti and Richard Lawson as well as guest Chris Harris who returned to the scene where he lifted the Premiership trophy eight days previous.
After crashing out of his first outing, Thomas Jorgensen produced a brilliant ride to get the better of Doyle in heat five before Robert Lambert and Riss combined for a first home maximum of the evening.
It was that No.1 and No.2 duo who delivered the goods again in heat 10 as they both put everything on the line to squeeze by Paul Starke over laps two and three.
But it only prolonged the inevitable as the Rebels sealed the trophy in the very next race as Doyle and key reserve Covatti got the better of Niels-Kristian Iversen.
The Stars finished off with three heat advantages, coming from 10 down on the night to snatch a draw - but sadly it was to no avail.
Co-promoter Robin Brundle said: “Congratulations to Somerset, they were the better team over the two legs.
“We’ve had a great season overall and it was just a shame we ended up as silver medalists twice in the end.
“We’ve taken steps in the right direction this season and now we begin the hard work for 2019.”
King’s Lynn 45: Robert Lambert 12+2, Erik Riss 10+2, Niels-Kristian Iversen 7, Thomas Jorgensen 6, Ty Proctor 6, Tero Aarnio 2+1, Simon Lambert 2.
Somerset 45: Nico Covatti 12+3, Jason Doyle 9, Richard Lawson 9, Chris Harris 8+1, Paul Starke 6, Coty Garcia 1, Bradley Wilson-Dean R/R.