Eastbourne suffered a stinging defeat at Scunthorpe in the Championship tonight.
Scunthorpe Scorpions held the whip hand through the meeting.
The defeat was made worse by the withdrawal from the meeting of Fineprint Eagles captain, Edward Kennett.
The Hailsham-based rider had won his first two race before he twice clashed heavily with Stefan Nielsen in heat 9.
After the second crash, he did not reappear.
Our man trackside David Graveling reports that Edward Kennett is bruised and should be fit for Sunday’s KO quarter final against Leicester at Arlington Stadium, 3.30pm start.
Scunthorpe: Josh Auty 10, Danny Ayres 7+3, Steve Worrall 10, Stefan Nielsen 7+2, Jake Allen 12, Joe Lawlor 0, Ryan Kinsley 8+2.
Eastbourne: Richard Lawson 8, Ben Morley 2, Kyle Newman 6, Lewi Kerr 7+2, Edward Kennett 6, Alfie Bowtell 3+2, Georgie Wood 3.
Here’s how we reported tonight’s match live:
Championship league points are stake tonight as the Eastbourne Fineprint Eagles travel to north Lincolsnhire to take on Scunthorpe.
The Scorpions were put to the sword last Saturday at Arlington; now the Eagles are seeking to get away league points for the first time this year.
We will be running our heat-by-heat live blog from the track on this website.
John Ling with David Graveling are already at the Eddie Wright Raceway and they will be bringing you the action. David is also providing some pre-match photographs.
The match gets under way at 7.30pm but photographs from David shows the weather is lovely. The tracks look good and there is a light wind.
Scunthorpe Scorpions: 1. Josh Auty, 2. Danny Ayres, 3. Steve Worrall (guest), 4. Stefan Nielsen, 5. Jake Allen, 6. Joe Lawlor (guest), 7. Ryan Kinsley.
Eastbourne Fineprint Eagles: 1. Richard Lawson, 2. Ben Morley, 3. Kyle Newman, 4. Lewi Kerr, 5. Edward Kennett, 6. Alfie Bowtell, 7. Georgie Wood.
Referee: Dave Watters
The riders are now on parade. The Fineprint Eagles will go off gates 1 and 3 in heat one
Heat 1: Josh Auty down. All four back. In the re-run, Lawson streams to a fine win from Auty, Ayres and Morley who very briefly held second before being overwhelmed by the home duo 3-3 (time 58.25)
Heat 2: Kingsley, Wood with a strong ride and Bowtell third with Lawlor having bike problems on lap 2; 3-3, 6-6, 58.56
Heat 3: First blood to the Scorpions. Steve Worrall comes home first with Nielsen tucked behind ahead of Newman and Kerr. It was a from-the-gate 5-1, 11-7, 58.00
Heat 4: Not a whole lot of passing so far. In race 4, captain Edward Kennett takes the chequered flag from Allen, Kinsley and Wood, 3-3, 14-10, 55.75
Heat 5: The Worrall/Nielsen pairing strike again for another maximum heat win. This time it is ahead of Lawson and Morley, 5-1, 19-11, 58.40.
Heat 6: Things are certainly not going Eastbourne’s way at Scunthorpe tonight with the home team firmly in the driving seat at the one-third distance. Kennett takes a second win in the sixth race, leading home Auty and Ayres with Bowtell at the back. 3-3, 22-14, 58.09
Heat 7: Race stopped. All four back with Kerr warned to stay still at the start. Back to the 3-3s with Allen taking the win from Newman, then Kerr with Lawlor retiring once again; 3-3, 25-17, 58.06
Heat 8: This time it is Wood warned about moving at the start. When the race gets under way it is again from the gate with Ayres, from Kinsley, Wood and then Morley; 5-1, 30-18, 58.93. Little or not passing so far.
Heat 9: Big crash on bend 2. All riders up and appear to be OK. Scunthorpe have just announced the signing of Ben Barker and Simon Lambert. Start of heat 9 delayed to sort out men and machines after the Nielsen, Kennett, Worrall smash. Worrall being treated in ambulance, bad cut to leg, it is reported. Riders called with two-minute warning to get race 9 under way.
Re-run: Another big clash. Edward and Stefan clash again. Kennett went down hard; he is now up and walking slowly and gingerly back to the pits. Yet again, all four back but a delay to get men and machines ready. And the bad news for Eastbourne is that Edward Kennett has been forced to withdraw from the meeting. We will now be using injury rider replacement in his place.
Re-run: Kerr steps in to take Kennett’s place. The race is won Nielsen from Kerr with Steve Worrall third and Bowtell last. The Scorpions now totally in control; 4-2, 34-20; 58.65
Heat 10: We have no news as yet as to why Edward has withdrawn but he took two huge crashes in heat 9. And now Lewi has suffered a tapes exclusion as things go from bad to worse for the Eagles at the Eddie Wright Raceway. He will start 15m back. Another home 5-1 with Auty leading home Ayres with Newman third and Kerr at the back; 5-1, 39-21, 58.59. The match has reached two-thirds distance and the Eagles are 18 points down and have lost their captain and talisman, Edward Kennett to injury. We are having a really tough night.
Heat 11: Can it get any worse? Yes, Richard Lawson is down on bend one and is excluded. The re-run is won by Allen from Morley and Lawlor goes down and is excluded; 3-2 42-23, no time, race awarded.
Heat 12: Worrall get another win, this time with Kyle second and Alfie third and Kinsley at the back; 3-3, 45-26, 58.82.
Heat 13: Newman is IRR for Edward in this one. Getting even worse…Kyle excluded for hitting the tapes and will go off 15m. Lawson really does well but it is another Scorpions’ heat advantage: Auty, Lawson, Allen, Newman; 4-2, 49-28, 58.90.
Heat 14: Kinsley in for Lawlor on the Scunthorpe side. Now Wood breaks the tapes and is replaced by Bowtell. The stop-start nature of this meeting goes on. We have had tape exclusions, crashes, and now Nielsen is down on bend 1 and excluded. The ambulance is on track for the injured Scorpion. Pleased to say Nielsen is up and OK. Re-run: Kerr, Kinsley, Bowtell, Nielsen (exc) finally gives us a heat advantage; 2-4 51-32, 59.25
Heat 15: Allen (r), Ayres (b), Lawson (w), Lewi (y). The night needs with a -3. Race won by Allen from Lawson, with Lewi third and Ayres at the back; 3-3, 54-35; 58.31