Rebels pair lose out in the final

Somerset Rebels.

Somerset Rebels. - Credit: Archant

The Somerset Rebels pairing of Nick Morris and Olly Allen were beaten in the final of the Premier League pairs event.

THE Cases Somerset Rebels hopes of retaining their Premier League pairs crown ended in heartbreak.

After qualifying through to the final where they faced Edinburgh, Nick Morris was excluded after coming to grief in a tight first turn with the Monarchs’ Max Fricke, which effectively ended Somerset’s chance of victory.

Played out in front of a packed Oaktree Arena, the preliminary group stages were of a contrasting nature, Group A being a tight affair, with four of the five teams tied on 14 points.

The final rides saw Redcar book their passage into the semi-finals with a 7-2 race win over Newcastle, but Peterborough’s 6-3 race advantage over Ipswich left the door ajar for Workington, many people’s pre-meeting favourites, to pip the Panthers for the second semi-final berth.

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The Workington duo of Josh Grajczonek and Rene Bach raced away to a 7-2 maximum heat win in their final outing to finish level with Redcar on 21 points.

By contrast Somerset won Group B with comparative ease, Nick Morris and Olly Allen dropping just three points as they topped the group with 25 points, with Edinburgh making sure of their place in the semi-finals with a resounding 7-2 race win over Sheffield.

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The first semi-final saw Redcar up against Edinburgh, but the Bears were never in it as the Monarchs’ duo of Sam Masters and Max Fricke both made excellent starts to totally dominate proceedings as they sped away to a 7-2 race win.

The second semi-final saw Somerset and Workington come to the tapes to determine who would be Edinburgh’s opponents in the final, with Morris and Allen taking a one-two to progress through.

The eagerly anticipated final though was to be an anti-climax with Morris’ exclusion from the initial running of the race, and although Somerset captain Olly Allen duly won the re-run, the Edinburgh duo of Masters and Fricke picked up five points to win the event.

“It was a bitterly disappointing way to lose the meeting,” said Somerset team manager Garry May, “but the referee had to make a decision and unfortunately it didn’t go our way.”

It is a return to Premier League action tomorrow evening (7.30pm) for the Rebels as they face the Newcastle Diamonds at the Oaktree Arena.

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