Disastrous start - but Eastbourne Eagles edge past Poole Pirates
Eastbourne snatched victory by one point against Poole tonight (May 29) after winning the final race of the night 5-1.
The maximum heat win gave the HG Aerospace Eagles a 45-44 win in the South Coast Derby having trailed throughout the whole match after a calamitous heat one.
The home side’s No 1, Edward Kennett, crashed on the first turn and was excluded while in the re-run Tom Brennan ground to halt while in a winning position after losing his primary chain.
More troubles for both Kennett and Brennan in heat ten put the Eagles deep into the mire.
Kennett lost his steel shoe and struggled home second after Brennan’s engine seized which put him out of the race.
Eastbourne gradually edged back into the meeting as Richard Lawson hit form with three successive heat wins and Lewi Kerr playing a perfect captain’s role with a vital win in heat 14.
Lawson and Kerr then teamed up in the last race for the match-winning 5-1 as the home crowd roared them on to the chequered flag.
Eastbourne co-promoter and team manager, Trevor Geer, said: “What a first meeting to come back to after 20 months away. It was unbelievable.
“To be down all meeting and come back like that was perfect for the supporters.
“Richard [Lawson] looked awful early on but he came back towards the end of the meeting and was back to his old self.
“Tom [Brennan] was absolutely brilliant today and he could have got a maximum but it was bad luck that let him down.
“I did have him earmarked for heat 15 but at the end we had to go with Lewi and Richard because they looked so good.
“I thought it would be close tonight but not this close. I expected we would win more easily than we did.
“It was a full house crowd with Covid restrictions and next week hopefully we will have a few more people in here when we race Kent.
Eastbourne: Lewis Kerr 12+1, Richard Lawson 10, Tom Brennan 6, Kyle Newman 5+2, Jason Edwards 5, Edward Kennett 4+1, Drew Kemp 3+1.
Poole: Steve Worrall 13, Danny King 9, Rory Schlein 8+1, Danyon Hume 5+2, Stefan Nielsen 5+1, Zane Keleher 2+1, Ben Cook 2.