King’s Lynn Stars’ superb winning run is over
Lakeside 47 King's Lynn Stars 43
King's Lynn's 14-meeting winning run came to an end in a clash of the Elite League top two at Arena Essex – but they still went away with a point after some last heat heroics.
The Stars looked on course when leading 22-14 after six heats, but the home side battled their way back in front to lead 40-32 with three heats remaining.
However, guest Scott Nicholls and Niels Kristian Iversen turned the screw in heats 13 and 15 to ensure the Stars went back to the Norfolk Arena with a point for their efforts.
Iversen and impressive reserve Lewis Blackbird took the chequered flag in heats one and two for two shared heats, before the fast gating of Nicholls and Schlein left Mikkel Bech and Peter Karlsson way out the back for a first maximum of the night. Blackbird made it two from two with another fine gate-to-tape win as he held off the challenge of Ben Barker superbly, and with guest Jan Graversen getting the better of Ben Morley, the Stars moved 15-9 in front after four heats.
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The Stars won their fifth on the spin when Schlein gated to victory for another shared heat, before Barker could only separate Nicholls and Iversen as the visitors increased their lead to 22-14.
But skipper Richard Lawson led by example with victory in heat seven as Adam Ellis got the better of Lewis Rose for a first home advantage.
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That proved to be the turning point as Bech and Barker combined for a maximum in the following heat to leave the Stars just two in front at 25-23. The hosts were now in inspired form as Lawson and Bech got the better of Schlein and Nicholls for a home 5-1 to move them in front for the first time, and then heat 11 4-2 put them 35-31 in front.
More was to come as Morley and Lawson cruised to another maximum to leave the Hammers 40-32 up going into the final three heats.
However, the hosts continue to struggle in heat 13 and Iversen and Nicholls led from the front to keep the Stars in the hunt.
The resurgent Barker and Morley saw off the threat from Blackbird and Lambert in heat 14 to leave the Stars staring at only their second loss of the season, but Nicholls and Iversen came up trumps to ensure they came away with a point.
Lakeside 47 (number of rides): Lawson 11+2 (5), Bech 6+1 (6), Barker 9+1 (5), Karlsson 9+1 (6), Morley 8+2 (5), Ellis 4+1 (3)
King's Lynn 43: Iversen 11+1 (5), Graversen 1 (4), Schlein 7+1 (4), Lambert 2 (4), Nicholls 11+1 (5), Blackbird 11 (5), Rose 0 (3)