Hammers hit back to hold leaders
PUBLISHED: 08:31 28 July 2015 | UPDATED: 08:31 28 July 2015
Rob Newell/TGSPHOTO c/o 27 Plaiters Way, Braintree, Essex, CM7 3LR - Editorial Use ONLY - FA Premier League and Football League
Elite League: Lakeside Hammers 45 Coventry Bees 45
Lakeside Hammers held Elite League leaders Coventry to a draw after a dramatic stop-start meeting at the Arena Essex Raceway last night.
The meeting came down to the final heat with the points level, with the visitors getting the better start as Hans Andersen took the lead.
But Hammers captain Andreas Jonsson attacked the Coventry rider and, on the last lap, the Swedish rider found the drive to beat his rival to the line to ensure the meeting ended all square.
The meeting was full of excitement and crashes, but sadly Stuart Robson had a huge crash in heat one which ruled him out of the rest of the meeting. The Hammers also had a few injuries with guest rider Adam Roynon breaking his left collarbone and Adam Ellis breaking a bone in his hand halfway through the meeting.
The first heat only got to the first corner as Robson got too close to Mikkel Bech going into turn one and the British rider fell awkwardly.
The Coventry rider received medical attention on the track for several minutes and was declared unfit to ride for the rest of the night.
Jason Garrity replaced Robson and made a great start, but he had a huge moment at the exit of turn three which cost him victory as onsson took the lead going into lap two and kept it to the chequered flag.
Chris Harris overtook Bech going into turn one on the inside to claim second place, but the Hammers claimed a heat advantage.
Garrity was out again in the reserve rider heat and once again the Coventry rider hit the front going into the first corner.
Ellis grabbed second on the first lap, with Roynon passing James Sargeant to stop the Bees bringing the scores level.
Heat three saw Edward Kennett fall going into turn one, which brought out the red flag once again.
In the restart, it was Andersen who powered his way to victory, but there was a big battle for third as Daniel King attacked Kennett for the final scoring postion, but the former Hammer could not find a way past and the points were shared.
Garrity replaced Sargeant for heat four and the Coventry pair once again made the gate, as they had a one-two going into turn one with Garrity in the lead.
The Hammers pushed Joonas Kylmakorpi in second, but they could not find a way through and the Bees claimed a 5-1.
After four heats, the visitors had a small advantage at 13-11, with Garrity back again in heat five as Sargeant replaced the injured Robson.
Sargeant jumped the start which caused the third re-run of the night and once they got going again it was Bech who took victory in a shared heat.
Kennett made a great start to heat six, but Harris managed to pass the Lakeside rider going into turn one.
Harris pushed Kennett wide, which allowed Andersen to pass the Hammer, but the Coventry rider made a mistake on the third lap which allowed Kennett back through.
The visitors claimed an important 4-2, but Hammers made a great start to heat seven with Jonsson and Davey Watt.
The two veteran riders dominated to secure the home side’s first 5-1 on the night as they levelled the overall scores at 21-21.
Sargeant jumped the start again in heat eight and broke the tapes, with the Coventry rider penalised and starting the heat 15 metres behind the rest of the pack.
Garrity then jumped the start in the re-run, but once the heat finally got underway it was Richard Lawson who hit the front.
Ellis fell on the exit of turn two with a dramatic chain failure, causing another red flag, and was down for several minutes as the medical team attended to his injuries.
The Hammers rider was excluded as the riders prepared for the fourth restart, with Lawson making the gate again and claiming the victory, which saw the points shared going into heat nine.
Garrity replaced Sargeant, which meant he had raced in six of the first nine heats, but thankfully for the Purfleet-based squad he could only ride once move in heat 12.
Ellis replaced Roynon for the hosts, but the Bees duo made the start and dominated the race to claim a vital 5-1, with former Hammer Kylmakorpi taking the victory.
Harris overtook Kennett on the first lap of heat 10 to take the lead, but Kennett made a stunning move on Harris at turn three to regain the advantage.
Watt showed great determination to hold onto third place as Sargeant battled hard to pass the Australian, as the home side claimed a heat advantage to close the gap to two points.
Heat 11 saw Jonsson take the lead at turn one, with King pushing hard to catch the Swedish rider.
But the Coventry rider crashed heavily on lap three and was buried under the air fencing, with the race awarded as a 5-1 to the Hammers, which gave them a two-point lead at 34-32.
The second reserve rider heat saw only three riders at the start line as Ellis pulled out with a hand injury.
This gave the visitors the upper hand as it was reported that Roynon had a broken left collarbone going into the race.
The Bees ran away with the victory due to Roynon’s injury and regained the lead with three heats to go.
Heat 13 was a vital heat for the home side if they wanted to stay in this meeting, but Andersen who made the start and Harris passed Watt and Jonsson to move up into second.
Jonsson hit back quickly to overtake Harris, but the Bees gained a heat advantage and four-point lead with two heats to go.
The Hammers needed a 5-1 to level the score going into the final heat and made the perfect start as Lawson and Kennett were running one-two.
The duo showed good team-riding skills, but nearly threw it away on the last lap as Kennett ran extremely wide.
They held on to make it a winner-takes-all heat 15, where Kennett and Jonsson lined up for the Hammers as Coventry relied on Harris and Andersen.
Andersen got the perfect getaway with Jonsson behind him in second, but Kennett was at the back and, although he attacked Harris he lost touch with Coventry’s number one on the final lap.
Jonsson stole victory from Andersen on the line, though, to draw the match as the Swedish driver got a fantastic drive on the exit of turn four and that was enough to beat his rival to the flag.
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