TIGERS TAMED!

Friday June 10, 2016
PETERBOROUGH stormed back to the top of the Premier League with a terrific triumph against title rivals Glasgow on Friday night.

The 'T Balfe Construction' Panthers recovered from an early six-point deficit to power to all three available league points with a 50-40 success in the latest East of England Showground thriller.

Number one Craig Cook top-scored with a fine 14-point haul while guest ace Lasse Bjerre and stand-in skipper Simon Lambert both recorded double-figures hauls of their own.

Panthers wrapped up victory with a race to spare when their other guest, Michael Palm Toft, took the flag in a 4-2 in heat 14 before Cook and Bjerre provided the perfect finish to another memorable Alwalton night with a 5-1 in the finale to end the visitors’ hopes of a consolation point.

Delighted Peterborough team boss Jason Attwood said: “The meeting was every bit as tough and exciting as I expected it would be.

“I did say beforehand that I would not be in the slightest bit surprised if it boiled down to a last-heat decider – and even though we had won the meeting in heat 14 we still had a job to do in heat 15 to ensure we didn't let Glasgow pick up a point.

"It's great to be back on top of the table as it’s where we want to be. It was also nice to be able to beat another team in Glasgow who are going to be right up there throughout the season.”

Cook dropped his only point of the night when beaten by Tigers guest Kyle Howarth in a shared opener, but Panthers quickly hit the front as Lambert inspired a 4-2 in heat two.

New recruit Zdenek Holub also darted down the inside of Glasgow reserve Fernando Garcia to ensure his first ride in Peterborough colours came complete with a first point.

But the duo of Palm Toft and the returning Nikolaj Busk Jakobsen, back after just over a month out with concussion, were on the receiving end of two 5-1s in the space of three races as the visitors eased into a six-point advantage.

Panthers weren’t about to wilt though, and they delivered back-to-back advantages to haul themselves level.

Cook clocked the fastest time of the night (59.6 secs) when taking the flag in a 4-2 in heat six before Holub impressed as he scythed past both Glasgow men on the opening lap of the seventh contest to follow in the borrowed Bjerre for a 5-1.

And a run of six gains in the final seven races then propelled Panthers to a pleasing success.

Palm Toft, Cook and Bjerre were first home in a run of three successive 4-2s that opened up a six-point lead before mechanical issues for Lambert gave Glasgow a route back into the clash.

Lambert, sent out in place of the out-of-sorts Busk Jakobsen for heat 12, had engine trouble at the start and went into the tapes

He subsequently had to race off a 15-metre handicap and was powerless to prevent Richie Worrall and Garcia grabbing the visitors a 5-1 even though he came within millimetres of passing the Argentinian on the final lap.

It wasn’t the first close encounter between those two riders on the night. Garcia had to retire with wheel damage after they had tangled in the opening bend of heat six before the Argentinian’s aggressive riding infuriated Lambert as they battled for third place in heat eight.

They were not in such close proximity in heat 14 when Lambert completed his latest seven-ride shift by helping Panthers secure victory.

His third place, combined with a fine Palm Toft success, earned a 4-2 that put the hosts in an unassailable position after Cook and Bjerre had achieved the same outcome in an all-action previous race.

And it was those two riders who got the nod from team boss Attwood for the finale with a clear brief of securing a heat advantage to send Panthers back to the Premier League summit. They certainly didn’t disappoint as a 5-1 put the seal on a fifth successive Panthers victory in all competitions.

Attwood added: “I must give Ged Rathbone all the credit for booking Lasse.

“His form for Redcar hasn’t always been brilliant so far this season, but he certainly knows his way round this place and he was terrific for us - and having his older brother Kenneth on the spanners must have been a great help.

“It was also nice to see ‘Tofty’ come up with a couple of important wins as well – including the one that clinched victory in heat 14.

“It was a good team effort all-round. Zdenek certainly did okay on his debut and while Nikolaj only picked up a couple of points, they were important in the grand scheme of things.”

Panthers will aim to continue their fine form when back in action on Tuesday (June 14) as Workington head to the East of England Showground (7.30pm).

SCORES

PETERBOROUGH ‘T BALFE CONSTRUCTION’ PANTHERS: Craig Cook 14, Lasse Bjerre (guest) 12+1, Simon Lambert 11, Michael Palm Toft (guest) 8+1, Zdenek Holub 3+1, Nikolaj Busk Jakobsen 2, Rider replacement for Tom Perry.

GLASGOW: Richie Worrall 10+1, Kyle Howarth 10+1, Danny Ayres 7, Aaron Summers 5+1, Richard Lawson 4+1, Fernando Garcia 4+1, Rider replacement for Nike Lunna.

HEATS
1 - Howarth (59.8), Cook, Palm Toft, Lawson. 3-3, 3-3.
2 - Lambert (60.0), Ayres, Holub, Garcia. 4-2, 7-5.
3 - Ayres (60.6), Worrall, Busk Jakobsen, Palm Toft (ret). 1-5, 8-10.
4 - Bjerre (60.4), Ayres, Summers, Holub. 3-3, 11-13.
5 - Howarth (60.8), Lawson, Palm Toft, Busk Jakobsen. 1-5, 12-18.
6 - Cook (59.6), Summers, Lambert, Garcia (ret). 4-2, 16-20.
7 - re-run Bjerre (61.1), Holub, Worrall, Ayres. 5-1, 21-21.
8 - Lambert (61.8), Garcia, Howarth, Busk Jakobsen (ret). 3-3, 24-24.
9 - Palm Toft (61.3), Summers, Busk Jakobsen, Ayres. 4-2, 28-26.
10 - Cook (61.0), Worrall, Lambert, Garcia. 4-2, 32-28.
11 - Bjerre (61.8), Howarth, Lambert, Lawson (ret). 4-2, 36-30.
12 - re-run Worrall (62.), Garcia, Lambert (15m), Holub. 1-5, 37-35.
13 - Cook (62.6), Lawson, Bjerre, Summers. 4-2, 41-37.
14 - Palm Toft (62.9), Worrall, Lambert, Garcia. 4-2, 45-39.
15 - Cook (62.4), Bjerre, Howarth, Worrall. 5-1, 50-40.

PICTURE: Impressive guest Lasse Bjerre leads the way for Peterborough against Glasgow - by STEVE HONE

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