Last race engine failure denies away victory

Redcar Bears46

Berwick Bandits 43

A CRUEL twist of fate denied Berwick their first away league victory of the season when they took on Redcar last Thursday.

The Bandits went into a heat 15 decider again the Bears just one point down at 42-41.

Sebastian Alden, who had won three of his first four rides, made the gate, and with Kozza Smith tucking in for third place behind fellow Aussie Jason Lyons the Borderers were on for a match-winning 2-4.

But at the end of the first lap the Swede suffered an electrical fault which caused his bike to slow, and it was the home side who gratefully accepted the points to scrape a narrow three point win on the night.

Alden was visibly upset, but promoter John Anderson said afterwards:

“It was a great match, very exciting and it produced a thrilling atmosphere, but that final hammer-blow of ghastly luck sealed out fate taking the deserved win away from us.

“However, Seb need not worry, because it was just a quirk of fate and the engine failure does nothing to detract from his excellent performance on the night.”

Berwick had got off to the best of starts with Alden and fellow Swede Alex Edberg racing to a first heat 1-5.

Redcar levelled it up in two but Smith and Josef Franc, who was passed by Gary Havelock, restored the lead with a 2-4 in three which put the visitors 8-10 in front.

It was all square again after four, with Redcar moving 17-13 in front following a 5-1 in five.

Heat six was shared before Smith made it two wins out of two in seven, but then Edberg was harshly excluded in eight for going under Robert Branford and at 28-25 after nine it was obvious that the fans’ predictions of a close encounter were not going to be too far wide of the mark.

The teams swapped 4-2s in 10 and 11, Alden taking the flag in the latter, but when Smith and Mitchell Davey claimed a maximum in 12 the Bandits suddenly found themselves 34-37 in front.

Alden beat Lyons in 13 as the score moved on to 37-40, but the Bears were not finished yet and Havelock forced his way past both Davey and Jade Mudgway in 14 to join Peter Juul at the front and a 5-1 saw the Bears take a slender one point advantage into the last race .

Alden looked set for his fourth win of the night, but sadly the gremlins struck and it was not to be.

Berwick left Teesside with the consolation of a losing bonus point, but they know it could have been all three points, although Redcar will probably point to two earlier engine failures suffered by Aaron Summers when in scoring positions which affected their overall tally.

Bandits, meanwhile, will probably also look at the performances of Franc and skipper Lee Complin, who both under-performed on a track they have raced well on in the past.

Redcar - Lyons 12, Juul 12, Havelock 9+1, Kus 5+1, Summers 4+1, Branford 3+1, Tomicek 1. Berwick - Smith 13, Alden 10, Davey 5+2, Mudgway 5, Edberg 4+2, Complin 4, Franc 2.