PANTHERS EXIT IN SEMIS

Friday July 20, 2018
PETERBOROUGH saw their Championship Pairs hopes dashed at the semi-final stage at Somerset on Friday.

The T.Balfe Construction Panthers were looking to complete a Fours/Pairs double, and it was very much on for a time as they fought their way through a tough group to reach the last four.

But the semi-final saw Michael Palm Toft and Scott Nicholls beaten by Workington duo Nicolai Klindt and Ty Proctor, as the Comets went through to face holders Sheffield in the Final.

Palm Toft was outstanding in the group stage with three race wins out of four, whilst Nicholls backed him up with three third places.

They started with a 6-3 advantage over Edinburgh in Heat 3 as Ricky Wells split the Panthers duo, and repeated the result against Berwick next time out with MPT overhauling Doolan at the start of the second lap whilst Nicholls re-passed Aaron Summers in a tight scrap for third.

Palm Toft’s only defeat came at the hands of Lakeside’s Richard Lawson in Heat 13, but with Nicholls third over Nick Morris, Panthers still took a race advantage over the Hammers.

Edinburgh emerged as the closest challengers to Panthers and Lakeside, but the Monarchs required maximum points over Berwick in Heat 15 to apply maximum pressure, and were restricted to six out of seven.

That meant Panthers needed just a second place from their last race against Scunthorpe to ensure they went through, and Palm Toft went one better than that by defeating Jake Allen and Josh Auty.

The 5-4 over Lakeside meant Panthers topped the group when both sides finished on 21 points, but both would miss out in the semi-finals.

Panthers were defeated by some successful team-riding from the Comets’ Klindt and Proctor in the first semi, whilst the Hammers lost out to Sheffield in the second.

And it was the Tigers who would go on to successfully defend the title, with Charles Wright and Kyle Howarth packing in behind Proctor to take overall victory under the normal Pairs scoring format.

GROUP A:
PETERBOROUGH 21: Michael Palm Toft 15, Scott Nicholls 6
LAKESIDE 21: Richard Lawson 13, Nick Morris 8
EDINBURGH 20: Ricky Wells 12, Erik Riss 8
SCUNTHORPE 14: Jake Allen 9, Josh Auty 5
BERWICK 14: Aaron Summers 9, Kevin Doolan 5

GROUP B:
SHEFFIELD 22: Charles Wright 12, Kyle Howarth 10
WORKINGTON 20: Nicolai Klindt 12, Ty Proctor 8
REDCAR 20: Ben Barker 10, Thomas Jorgensen 10
IPSWICH 19: Rory Schlein 15, Nico Covatti 4
GLASGOW 9: Chris Harris 5, Paul Starke 4

Semi-final 1: Workington beat Peterborough 7-2
Semi-final 2: Sheffield beat Lakeside 7-2
Final: Sheffield beat Workington 5-4


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