Battling Bandits leave Newcastle empty-handed
NEWCASTLE DIAMONDS 53BERWICK BANDITS 37Berwick left Brough Park empty handed on Sunday, but not before putting up a fight in this Championship league fixture.
The Bandits saw Aaron Summers win his first four races, and with three races to go they trailed the Diamonds by only six points at 39-33.
But the Tynesiders finished the stronger, and with Stevie Worrall winning heats 13 and 15, both of which produced 5-1’s, they also took a 4-2 in heat 14, which saw them race off with maximum points, whilst Bandits missed out on a possible bonus.
Berwick went into the meeting without Nikolaj Busk Jakobsen, who was ill, and they used rider replacement to cover his races.
Summers, who won his programmed rides in heats one and five, the first of which got the visitors off to a flying 1-5 start with Jye Etheridge, also won heat four as Jakobsen’s replacement.
He was then used as a tactical replacement for Dany Gappmaier in heat seven when they found themselves six points down at 21-15, a 1-5 with Kevin Doolan cutting the deficit to only two points at 22-20.
But Berwick had two riders who failed to score from seven outings, and after track grading, Newcastle stepped up the pace, and they went on to produce all eight remaining race winners, achieving five heat advantages in the process.
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Newcastle – Worrall 12+1, Jorgensen 11+1, Wethers 9+2, Bjerre 9, Clegg 6+1, Phillips 4+1, Bukhave 2.
Berwick – Summers 15, Doolan 8+2, Garcia 8, Etheridge 6+2, Gappmaier 0, Flint 0, Jakobsen rider rep.
On Saturday, Berwick’s home meeting against Scunthorpe was postponed. With heavy rain and thunderstorms forecast for the evening, Bandits took the decision to call off the meeting in the morning to avoid any unnecessary travelling by riders and supporters.
As it turned out, the rain stayed away, but later a club spokesman said it was better to be safe than sorry.
A recent home meeting against Edinburgh fell victim to the weather shortly before the start, and the promotion wanted to avoid a possible repeat, which could have hit the club financially.