SPEEDWAY - LEAGUE CUP FINAL 2nd LEG REPORT
By Deegeetee | Saturday, October 27, 2012, 00:41
The 'Cases' Rebels travelled to Ipswich in the 2nd leg of this League Cup Final, holding a 14-point lead from last Friday's 1st leg held at the Oaktree Arena, but did so without the services of reserve Tom Perry who suffered a broken thumb and scaphoid when riding for Dudley earlier in the week. Perry joined Somerset captain, Jason Doyle, on the injury list, who was replaced by the new Premier League Riders' Champion, Edinburgh's Craig Cook, whilst Lewis Kerr came in as guest replacement for Perry.
If the Rebels aim was to keep things tight and frustrate the Witches early on, then the plan worked a treat as the Witches were only able to pull back 2 points on the Rebels in the opening 4 heats.
Any nerves in the Somerset camp were immediately eased in heat 1 when guest Craig Cook sped from the tapes for a comfortable heat win, things looking even better as Alex Davies held 3rd place with Ipswich number 1, Leigh Lanham failing to make impression on the Aussie.
That was until Davies found extra unwanted grip coming off the 2nd turn on the penultimate lap, it being a minor miracle that he managed to keep the bike under any sort of control, but it was, however, enough to allow Lanham through into 3rd place, it gave Ipswich a share of the spoils.
Ipswich pulled back 2 points on the Rebels in the reserves race, Tresarrieu taking victory ahead of Somerset's Kyle Newman, and although Kerr had initially got himself into 3rd place Stefan Nielsen was soon up and past the Rebel guest as the riders headed down the back straight on the opening lap.
With both of the next two heat being drawn, Jesper B Monberg winning heat 3 for Somerset ahead of North and Poole for the Witches, this at the 2nd time of asking after the 1st attempt to run the race was pulled back after Rebels skipper, James Wright, had been a bit too eager for referee Barbara Horley's liking.
Heat 4 saw Tungate hit the front as the riders came off the 2nd bend, only to see Kyle Newman come past and into the lead as they entered the next bend, but Newman's joy was short-lived as Tungate re-gained the advantage as the pair started the 2nd lap, but with Vissing following Newman home for 3rd place, it ensured that Ipswich made no further in-roads into the 12-point aggregate lead that Somerset now held.
There are certain defining moments that can determine any sporting contest and one of those came for the Rebels in heat 5, though its importance wasn't really to become fully apparent until much later in this match.
As he had done in the opening heat, Somerset guest Craig Cook was light years ahead of anyone else in leaving the start, but crucially his race-partner, Alex Davies, had also made a good gate to slot into 2nd place as the riders took to the first turn. The Ipswich duo of Poole and North never able to get on terms thereafter, North eventually pulling up on the 3rd lap while tailed off at the back, while the resultant maximum heat win for Somerset put them into a 2 point lead on the night and extended their original aggregate advantage to 16 points.
Ipswich immediately hit back with a maximum heat win of the own, Lanham and Risager taking a straightforward tapes to flag victory, but all it had effectively done was to get Ipswich back to where they were and the end of heat 4 and using up 2 precious heats in the process in getting themselves there.
Heat 7 saw Ipswich pull back another 2 points on the Rebels, Tungate making two straight wins on the night in taking the race victory, but with Monberg holding off Tresarrieu for 2nd place, it was damage limitation as far as the Rebels were concerned, the status quo being maintained with Davies and Newman packing in for the minor places behind Risager in heat 8.
With Somerset still holding a 10 point aggregate lead and 7 heats remaining, things were looking good for the Rebels, but all that was to change over the course of the next 2 heats as Ipswich posted two maximum race wins. The 8 points gained suddenly cut that lead to a mere 2 points, but with Ipswich also 12 points to the good on the night, it allowed the Rebels the option of a double point tactical ride, which was immediately confirmed with the hitherto unbeaten Craig Cook donning the black and white helmet colour for the Rebels.
And he did not disappoint, once again getting himself to the front from the tapes and seeing off the attentions of Tresarrieu and Tungate as the riders headed down the back straight for the first time.
Although Davies tried valiantly to get into a points scoring position, it wasn't to be, but Cook's 6-point haul it was good enough to put the brakes on Ipswich's charge, whilst at the same time moving out to a 5 point aggregate lead.
For the best part of heat 12 it appeared that Somerset would move into a virtually unassailable aggregate lead when Monberg and Newman hit the front from the off and were seemingly on their way to a maximum heat win. That was until Stefan Nielsen shed a chain while tailed off last, which saw him taking an awkward looking fall, and with him staying down, it left the referee no option but to bring proceedings to a halt.
After being attended to by the paramedics, and with no apparent injury or damage, Nielsen was able to walk back to the pits, but as is often the case in situations like this, the re-run saw a totally different outcome as although Newman hit the front from the off, Taylor Poole was to find a way past as the riders started the 2nd lap, and what had looked all over a 5-1 to Somerset in the first running, ended up with both sides taking 3 points a-piece.
The Rebels now effectively needed 7 points from the final 3 heats in order to lift the League Cup trophy, and 3 of those were 'chalked off' in heat 13, though not before Somerset Claus Vissing earned the wrath of the referee as he was deemed to be the cause of the stoppage that saw Leigh Lanham and Rohan Tungate come to grief as the riders entered the 3rd turn on the opening lap.
With Cook already establishing a commanding lead, Vissing found himself at the back, but quickly moved up alongside Lanham as they headed down the back straight, but as they took to the 3rd turn, Lanham came tumbling down, his errant bike then collecting Tungate who was also thrown to the Foxhall Stadium shale.
With Vissing duly excluded from the re-run, and Tungate given the all-clear by the track doctor, to take his place in the re-run, the three remaining riders came to the tapes for the restaging of the race, but any hopes the Ipswich duo had of upsetting the proverbial apple cart were instantly dismissed as Cook hit the front from the off and stormed away for a comfortable heat win.
His win maintained Somerset 5 point aggregate lead with just two heats remaining, but it was to take just a minute to banish any fear of a nail-biting last heat decider from the Rebel camp as Kyle Newman rode the race of his life to win heat 14, the Somerset reserve hitting the front as the riders came off the 2nd turn for the first time.
Newman then thwarted every move made by his opposite number, Mathieu Tresarrieu to get past and into the lead, and having seen the Frenchman off he came under further pressure from Ipswich's other rider, ex-Rebel Dakota North, but Newman was not to be denied and as he crossed the finishing line, it was the cue for celebrations to commence in the Somerset side of the pits, they just needing either of their representatives in heat 15 to finish the race to be taking the League Cup back to the West Country.
But rather than just go through the motions of trailing round to pick up that single point, Jesper Monberg hit the front from the off and with any hope of snatching victory at the death a forlorn hope for the Witches, he took the race win, the resultant 3-3 heat result giving Ipswich victory on the night 51-42, but more importantly it saw the 'Cases' Somerset Rebels winners on aggregate 95-90 to be crowned as the 2012 Premier League Cup winners.
Report; Ian Belcher
Somerset win 95-90 on aggregate
L Lanham1* 3 3 2 2 - - 11+1
M Risager2 2* 3 2* 1* - - 10+3
T Poole1* 1 3 3 - - - 8+1
D North2 R 2* 2 - - - 6+1
R Tungate 3 3 1* 1* - - - 8+2
M Tresarrieu3 1 0 2 1* - - 7+1
S Nielsen (g)1 0 X - - - - 1
Team Manager: Pete Simmons
C Cook (g) 3 3 6^ 3 - - - 15
A Davies0 2* 2 0 0 - - 4+1
J B Monberg3 2 1 1* 3 - - 10+1
J Wright0 0 0 - - - - 0
C Vissing1* 1 1 X - - - 3+1
K Newman2 2 1* 0 2 3 – 10+1
L Kerr (g)0 0 0 - - - - 0
Team Managers: Steve Bishop & Garry May
Referee: Barbara Horley
1: Cook, Risager, Lanham, Davies, 57.8(3-3)
2: Tresarrieu, Newman, Nielsen, Kerr, 58.2(7-5)
3: (re-run) Monberg, North, Poole, Wright, 58.1(10-8)
4: Tungate, Newman, Vissing, Nielsen, 59.2(13-11)
5: Cook, Davies, Poole, North (ret), 57.7(14-16)
6: Lanham, Risager, Vissing, Kerr, 58.4(19-17)
7: Tungate, Monberg, Tresarrieu, Wright, 59.0(23-19)
8: Risager, Davies, Newman, Tresarrieu, 59.1(26-22)
9: Poole, North, Vissing, Kerr, 58.9(32-23)
10: Lanham, Risager, Monberg, Newman, 58.8(36-24)
11: Cook^, Tresarrieu, Tungate, Davies, 58.7(39-30)
12: (re-run) Poole, Newman, Monberg, Nielsen (f.exc), 59.7(42-33)
13: (re-run) Cook, Lanham, Tungate, Vissing (exc), 59.5(45-36)
14: Newman, North, Tresarrieu, Wright, 59.65(48-39)
15: Monberg, Lanham, Risager, Davies, 59.9(51-42)