Thursday June 23, 2016
SWINDON returned to winning ways at home with a convincing 52-41 victory over second-placed Lakeside at the Abbey on Thursday.

All seven of the M&S Van Rental Robins won at least one race in a terrific all-round team performance and there were few alarms as they cruised to three more Elite League points.

Former Robins rider Edward Kennett made a stunning return to the Abbey with an 18-point haul, winning four races, but his efforts lacked support as the Hammers faded in mid-meeting.

The scores were level at 12-12 after four races with Stefan Nielsen hampered by an engine blow-up in Heat 2, but the Robins took control with three 5-1s in a four-race spell thereafter.

Rohan Tungate and an impressive Charles Wright took the spoils over Lewis Bridger and Lewis Kerr in Heat 5, skipper Jason Doyle and Josh Grajczonek relegated Kennett to a rare third place in Heat 7, and Nielsen recovered from his earlier issues to partner Justin Sedgmen to maximum points in the next.

In between those races came a scare for Nick Morris as he reared on the first bend of Heat 6 and came to grief, fortunately without colliding with any other rider. The Australian was unbeaten on the night apart from that slip.

Kennett banked the full six points from a tactical ride in Heat 9 but Morris and Grajczonek immediately hit back with a 5-1 in an awarded Heat 10 as Hammers guest Craig Cook crashed on the second lap.

That put the Robins eleven points to the good and points were split across the final five races with Kennett and Cook holding Doyle at bay for good wins in Heats 11 and 13, whilst Wright and Morris also took late victories before Kennett had the final say in Heat 15.

Swindon boss Alun Rossiter said: “It was a good performance, and all of the riders winning at least a race each is something we have to take as a positive.

“Charles looked back to his best, he’s had a few engine problems but it was good to see that performance because when he’s going well the rest of the team goes well. We’ve got to keep him going, he’s the one who seems to make everyone click!

“I was pleased with Josh, I had a quiet word with him beforehand because I do believe he needs to go up that next little notch, which is something he has the ability to do, and there’s more to come from him.

“Nick’s still not 100 per cent with his ankle, but he’s got another week now to recuperate and he looked a lot sharper.

“I was maybe a little surprised with Lakeside’s team selection, especially with the position they’re in and they pushed us here last time, but that’s not really my worry. All I’ve got to worry about it is my team!”

The Robins now have a week off before travelling to Coventry next Friday (July 1) and then hosting the Bees four nights later (July 4) in a big televised showdown at the Abbey with adult admission reduced to £10.

SWINDON 52: Charles Wright 10+1, Josh Grajczonek 10+1, Jason Doyle 9+1, Nick Morris 8+1, Justin Sedgmen 7+1, Rohan Tungate 4+1, Stefan Nielsen 4
LAKESIDE 41: Edward Kennett 18, Craig Cook 10, Lewis Bridger 5+2, Lewis Kerr 4+2, Robert Mear 4, Richard Lawson 0, Kim Nilsson r/r
Elite League points: Swindon 3 Lakeside 0

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