Bandits race well in Pairs but its no to the semis


Kevin Doolan and Aaron Summers represented the Berwick "KLS" Bandits (Powered by Mike Hope, Wooler) last night in the SGB Championship Pairs at Somerset, taking their qualification races in Group A directly against Lakeside, Scunthorpe, Edinburgh and Peterborough with the top two going on to the semi finals to meet the leaders in Group B, comprising Sheffield, Ipswich, Glasgow, Redcar and Workington.

The Berwick duo were first out in Heat Five against Scunthorpe's Josh Auty and Jake Allen, but the heat had to be restarted when the referee deemed both Bandits to have moved at the start, warning both, although there seemed many who disagreed with this ruling, however in the four-man re-run Auty was hauled back for the same offence with a second re-run called.

Heat Five finally came to a conclusion as Allen forced his was to the front on the opening bends, with Summers and Doolan racing hard behind, but with the ever-quickening Auty coming up strong the Bandits pair had to ride out of their skins to hold the heat winning second and third giving them victory 5-4 with the unusual pairs' scoring system, 4-3-2-0.

Berwick were next up against Scott Nicholls and Michael Palm Toft of the Peterborough Panthers who had won their first ride 6-3 over Edinburgh and come Heat Nine it was skipper Doolan who led early on until Palm Toft went round him on the first bend of the second lap as Summers went under Nicholls on the third bend, but with Nicholls' vast experience his continual blasting at the back paid dividends passing Summers off bend two on lap three to seal the Peterborough 6-3 win with Berwick now totalling 8 to sit in equal third with Edinburgh behind the Panthers and Lakeside.

Berwick's third opponents were Edinburgh's Erik Riss and Ricky Wells in Heat 15 and after Riss roared to the front on bend one, Summers took up the chase in second, but on the opening two laps also had to fend off some unwelcome attention from third placed Wells as Doolan upped his challenge on lap four, but Edinburgh hit home a 6-3 over the Bandits who moved on to 11 with only one more chance to hit Heat 19 for six.

That 19th race was against the high scoring Lakeside with former Berwick number one Nick Morris and Richard Lawson lining up against the Bandits, and it was again Summers who hit the front on bend one with Doolan trying to find a way out of the basement, briefly leading Morris until the Lakeside man whipped round the outside of bend two, but he kept his power on and got right up with Summers on bend one of the second lap to pass him off the fourth bend to take up an unassailable lead.

Doolan was neck and neck with Lawson on the third lap before the Hammer hit the gas moved away and challenged Summers on the final bends, the Bandits just holding second in the 3-6 win to Lakeside and with Berwick ending a spirited night of racing on 14, but that was only good enough for equal fourth in Group A with Scunthorpe as Lakeside and Peterborough made the semis, both on 21 points.

Sheffield's Tigers and Workington Comets joined them from Group B and the Comets defeated Peterborough after a tight race and brilliant team riding from Proctor and Klindt by 7-2 in the first semi with Tigers joining the Comets in the final having beaten Lakeside in the second semi 7-2 after Kyle Howarth had an amazing battle, passing and repassing with Lawson.

Come the final, again a tightly fought battle saw Sheffield win over Workington 5-4 to be come the 2018 SGB Championship Pairs winner.

Individual Riders' Score Chart - Qualification rides.

Group A
Lakeside Hammers 21
Nick Morris 4,0,0,4 = 8
Richard Lawson 3,4,4,2 = 13

Scunthorpe Scorpions 14
Josh Auty 0,0,3,2 = 5
Jake Allen 2,4,0,3 = 9

Edinburgh Monarchs 20
Ricky Wells 3,3,4,2 = 12
Erik Riss 0,2,2,4 = 8

Peterborough Panthers 21
Scott Nicholls 2,2,2,0 = 6
Michael Palm Toft 4,4,3,4 = 15

Berwick Bandits 14
Kevin Doolan 2,3,0,0 = 5
Aaron Summers 3,0,3,3 = 9

Group B

Sheffield Tigers 22
Kyle Howarth 2,4,2,2 = 10
Charles Wright 3,2,3,4 = 12

Ipswich Witches 19
Rory Schlein 4,4,3,4 = 15
Nico Covatti 0,R,4,0 = 4

Glasgow Tigers 9
Chris Harris 2,3,0,0 = 5
Paul Starke 0,0,2,2 = 4

Redcar Bears 20
Ben Barker 3,0,4,3 = 10
Thomas Jorgensen 4,4,0,2 = 10

Workington Comets 20
Ty Proctor 2,3,3,0 = 8
Nicolai Klindt 3,2,4,3 = 12