Skipper Doolan shines in defeat at Scunthorpe


Scunthorpe Scorpions 56
Berwick "Mike Hope of Wooler Ltd." Bandits (Powered by Clear Energy Consulting) 34
SGB Championship

The Berwick Bandits were a desperate side at Scunthorpe, keen to get back to piling some Championship league points as sitting on the bottom of the table was far from their bosses' scripts but after an enforced delay while the paramedics arrive, it was the Scorpions who took first blood with a Heat One 5-1 although Aaron Summers was up with home man Danny Ayres on bend one only for Ayres to whip off for the three points as Josh Auty relegated Summers into third.

Coty Garcia made a fine start in the second as Simon Lambert went round Bandits' reserve guest Jason Edwards (in for Leon Flint who was away on World Under-21 International duty). Ryan Kinsley was all over Garcia's rear wheel and passed him at the start of the last lap in a home 4-2.

Kevin Doolan and Ayres enjoyed a brilliant Heat Three race with Ayres passing the Bandit's skipper who, as Ben Barker tried a pass, swooped back and retook the lead with the passing and repassing going down to he flag in a shared 3-3 taking the score to 12-6. A Jake Allen / Lambert pairing hammered home a Scorpions maximum in Heat Four over Garcia and Summers to push the gap up by four more points to 10.

Doolan, as a tactical substitute rocketed away to win Heat Five, but Summers found his old form to join his captain up front as Barker and Kinsley followed them home in a Bandits' 1-5 with the scores now 18-12, but that advantage was instantly reversed as Auty and Ayres took the five over Edwards and Jye Etheridge returning the differential to 10 points again.

Allen became the first Scorpion to beat Doolan from the gate into second, but with Dany Gappmaier at the rear behind Kinsley, the scores moved forward to 27-15, while in the eighth Garcia again made a brilliant gate only to drift wide on the third bend allowing both Lambert and Ayres to take full advantage and put another 5-1 past the Bandits.

Following a great four-lap between Barker, Doolan and Lambert in Heat Nine, the resulting 4-2 took the score to 36-18 as Doolan and Ayres revisited their ding-ding battle in Heat 10, but the 3-3 took the score on to 39-21, leaving Berwick a mountain to climb to gain reward with five races left to run.

Summers took the 11th despite huge pressure from Allen behind as Berwick stemmed the impending defeat, although four Bandits' 1-5s would still gain a draw, however Heat 12 saw Lambert overhaul Doolan after another fine battle, and with Barker chasing in third over Edwards, but the 4-2 ended Berwick's challenge with the score, with four to go, at 45-27.

Bandits' manager Gary Flint said: "We were once again without Nikolaj Busk Jakobsen after he had to return to Denmark suffering from appendicitis and we had to use rider replacement which didn't reflect to power of the man, while Leon Flint had to take time out for international duty, but our skipper Kevin (Doolan) was on fire and kept our end up from start to finish making our score way more respectable than it might have been."

Individual Riders' Score Chart:

Scunthorpe Scorpions 56

Josh Auty 2*,3,2,3,1* = 11+2
Danny Ayres 3,2,2*,2*,1*,2 = 12+3
Ben Barker 1*,1,3,1,3 = 9+1
Stefan Nielsen - Rider replacement
Jake Allen 3,3,2,1 = 9
Ryan Kinsley (r) 3,0,1,0,1 = 5
Simon Lambert (r) 1,2*,3,1,3 = 10+1

Berwick "Mike Hope of Wooler Ltd." Bandits (Powered by Clear Energy Consulting) 34

Aaron Summers 1,0,2*,3,2,3 = 11+1
Jye Etheridge 0,Ts,0,0 = 0
Kevin Doolan (c) 3,3,2,2,3,2,0 = 15
Dany Gappmaier 0,0,0,2 = 2
Nikolaj Busk Jakobsen - Rider replacement
Jason Edwards (guest) (r) 0,1,0,0 = 1
Coty Garcia (r) 2,1,1,1,0,0 = 5