Ryan triumphs in Somerset Open Championship

Elite League rider Ryan Fisher wins the Somerset Open Championship held at the Oaktree Arena.

FOR the first time since 2003, the Somerset Open Championship brought an interesting field to the tapes to contest the trophy.

The mixed field at the Oaktree Arena drew from the top of the Elite League, with Bjarne Pedersen, Ryan Fisher and Lewis Bridger, the newly crowned Premier League Riders Champion, Sam Masters, a sprinkling of current and former Rebels, including Mark Lemon and Jari M�kinen and two young Danes in Nicki Barrett and Jesper Soegaard Kristiansen. Due to injury Claus Vissing was unable to take his place, and Alex Davies suffered with a broken down van, with their places going to Kenny Ingalls and Jamie Pickard respectively.

Many thought that Bjarne Pedersen would be the pick of the field, but in the end it was Ryan Fisher who reigned supreme, with a dazzling unbeaten display, but he had to be right at the top of his game as Pedersen and Lewis Bridger were right there to take advantage of any mistakes. Although Bridger only just made it to his opening ride, as a motorway accident and traffic problems elsewhere delayed his arrival until just before tapes up.

Photo: Jay Eastwood/PhotoFinish.

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* There is a return to Premier League action at the Oaktree on Friday with the visit of Premier Champions elect the Glasgow Tigers.

The match is significant as not only could Glasgow go a long way to securing the Premier Championship, but it will also be the 300th meeting at be staged at the arena since the historic opening meeting back in 2000.

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A Glasgow win on Friday could see the Tigers virtually assure themselves of the 2011 crown, but they will be wary of the fact that on their last visit to the Oaktree Arena, back in July, they suffered one of their biggest league defeats of the season, losing to the Rebels 31-62.

As will be the case for the remainder of the season, the Rebels will be forced to go into the match using rider replacement and a guest rider for the injured duo of Christian Hefenbrock and Dakota North, with Newcastle’s Kyle Newman coming in as guest replacement for North.

This will leave the rider replacement facility to be used in place of Hefenbrock, with Newman, Cory Gathercole, plus the Somerset reserves Alex Davies and James Holder eligible to take his rides.

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