Topinka the bridesmaid once again

Aussie world team cup starlet Chris Holder sunk Tomas Topinka's bid for Pride of the East glory last night at the Norfolk Arena.Topinka was yet again cast in the bridesmaid's role after a series of near misses in the showpiece individual event over recent years.

Aussie world team cup starlet Chris Holder sunk Tomas Topinka's bid for Pride of the East glory last night at the Norfolk Arena.

Topinka was yet again cast in the bridesmaid's role after a series of near misses in the showpiece individual event over recent years.

Lynn's Czech maestro coasted to a five-ride maximum during the prelims - inflicting Holder's only reverse of the night - but the Isle of Wight talent exacted revenge in the grand final.

Lynn past and present filled the podium places with super consistent Swede Daniel Nermark edging out last year's treble winner Kevin Doolan to delight the home support. Doolan needed all his Saddlebow track craft to withstand a serious onslaught from British youngster Lewis Bridger to book his final berth.

Stars' second string Chris Mills turned in a solid display with Simon Lambert drafted in as a late booking for Trevor Harding. Former Stars' reserve Darren Mallett eclipsed the Boston man after replacing Premier League Riders' champion James Wright from the original line-up. Topinka signalled his intent early with a super swift trap to land a high class opener from sidekick Nermark with Doolan fending off Bridger. Lynn old boy Shaun Tacey claimed a re-run heat four after Cameron Woodward was excluded - young Aussie compatriot Kozza Smith forced out of the meeting after taking a tumble. Holder fired past Doolan in a red hot heat five before Nermark eclipsed arch gater Adam Allott to open his account.

Bridger deferred to Aussie U21 champion Holder in a searing battle of the young guns as the main contenders jostled for position.

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Topinka dived past Leigh Lanham to step up his challenge before Nermark edged out of trio of 2007 team mates to clinch heat 12 - KO Cup semi final hero Chris Schramm chasing home the Swede ahead of Mills and Lambert. Doolan's cut back inside Woodward triggered the Belle Vue man's late charge to oust Bridger. Topinka edged Holder in a heavyweight heat 15 dress rehearsal after Tacey slide off.

Doolan fired around the outside of Mills for the all important flag to scupper Bridger's grand final bid but Topinka and Holder eased out the pretenders to top the qualifiers ahead of their winner-takes-all showdown.

Grand Final: 1 Holder 2 Topinka 3 Nermark 4 Doolan. Qualifying heats (five races each): 1 Topinka 15 points, 2 Holder 14, 3 Nermark 13, 4 Doolan 12, 5 Bridger 11, 6 Franc 9, 7 Mills 8, 8 Schramm 7, 9 Lemon 6, Lanham 6, 11 Tacey 5, 12 Allott 4, Woodward 4, 14 Mallett 3, 15 Lambert 2, 16 Smith 0.

tMildenhall host the 'Big Bang Fours' meeting at West Row on Sunday (4.30pm). The Fen Tigers tackle Elite League local rivals Peterborough, a Boston past and present and East Anglian select in the one off climax to the season.

Mildenhall boss Laurence Rogers has also challenged King's Lynn Stars' track presenter Mike Bennett to a charity race off in aid of the Gary Stead appeal. The former Sheffield racer needs to raise £2,800 for a specially adapted wheelchair after being paralysed in a crash while on loan at Stoke.