Thursday June 20, 2019
SWINDON were left looking for answers after a 50-40 defeat at Peterborough on Thursday – despite having held an eight-point lead.

After six races there only looked to be one winner at the East of England Arena as the CFS Filtration Robins raced to three 5-1s and led 22-14.

But the turnaround in the second half of the meeting left Alun Rossiter’s side stunned, and a controversial Heat 13 had further ramifications on their ability to even take a point from the meeting.

Skipper Jason Doyle and the returning David Bellego got the Robins off to a perfect start with a 5-1 over Hans Andersen in Heat 1, and Rasmus Jensen went close to the track record in combining with Adam Ellis for a Heat 3 maximum that put the visitors six points up,

Robins made another big move in Heat 6 as Troy Batchelor and Ellis Perks hit the front, and both home riders suffered mechanical problems before offering any real challenge.

But the home side hit back strongly with three advantages in the next four races, as Batchelor found himself the victim of a clever Scott Nicholls cut-back in Heat 9 with Charles Wright up-front in a Peterborough 5-1.

Heat 10 produced real excitement with key guest Ricky Wells taking a win ahead of a furious scrap for second place between Jensen and Andersen as Peterborough levelled the scores.

Doyle then found himself caught out by a wide-riding Rohan Tungate, who came through to win Heat 11 and the momentum built for the Panthers with a 5-1 from Wells – a different rider to the one who struggled for Belle Vue at the Abbey on Monday – and Nicholls over Jensen in Heat 12.

But it was the next race which really frustrated the Robins as Andersen appeared to gain the benefit of a jump start, and after a two-lap battle between the front three, Doyle came down on the exit of turn four and the Panthers had another 5-1.

Swindon were unchanged for Heat 14 and Wright went inside Ellis for a 4-2 as the Panthers secured victory, and then Tungate won the last race over Jensen and Doyle to prevent the Robins from taking a league point.

Rossiter said: “I’ve got to hold my hands up because of the situation before Heat 14, and I should have known better than that.

“It was clear that Hans jumped the start in Heat 13 which affected Doyley. The referee told me he didn’t gain an advantage, but of course he did because he was in front.

“The pits ‘phone wasn’t working and I was speaking to the referee on a walkie-talkie which kept cutting out, and before I knew it the riders had been sent out for Heat 14.

“Obviously not doing a tactical substitute there may have cost us a point so that makes it all the more frustrating, and I know the referee won’t change his mind so I have to take that on the chin.

“But overall there are no excuses. We made too many mistakes towards the end of the meeting.

“We rode the wrong lines at the wrong times, and it’s a disappointing result from the position we were in.”

Robins now take a break from league action until early July, but have a big home meeting against King’s Lynn next Thursday (June 27) where a win will book their place in the Premiership Supporters’ Cup Final.

PETERBOROUGH 50: Rohan Tungate 12, Ricky Wells 12, Charles Wright 8, Scott Nicholls 7+2, Hans Andersen 5+1, Aaron Summers 5, Josh Bates 1+1.
SWINDON 40: Rasmus Jensen 10, Jason Doyle 8+1, David Bellego 6+2, Troy Batchelor 5+1, Ellis Perks 5+1, Adam Ellis 4+1, Paul Starke 2.

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