Rye House finish League Cup note on a high but Panthers produce some sharp gating and gain a point to qualify for semis
Rye House 49 Peterborough 43
The Silver Ski Rockets ended their involvement in this season’s League Cup on a high note as they collected a third straight win this year over high-flying Peterborough.
The Rockets had already edged the Panthers 46-44 in their Cup campaign opener at the East of England Showground, and bested the Panthers again 56-37 when the sides met in Hertfordshire in the East of England Cup.
They have proven a bit of a bugaboo for their opponents, who have otherwise been unbeaten in this Southern group and safely qualified for the semi-finals.
Rye had to overcome some sharp gating from the Cambridgeshire side here to earn their hard-fought victory, with Heats 10 through 12 absolutely central to the final result.
All featured the rejuvenated Jason Garrity With the Panthers hot on their heels at 29-25, the Rockets had to contend with Luke Bowen’s exclusion in Heat 10 for a start line infringement – both the Harlow Flyer’s helmet peak and his front tyre were deemed to have touched the tapes – but were not on the back-foot for long as reserve replacement Garrity stepped in to partner Edward Kennett to a 5-1 over Ulrich Ostergaard and Ales Dryml.
Garrity re-emerged for the next race, which opened with Ryan Fisher being penalised 15 metres for his own tapes exclusion and finished with both the Manchester man and Mathieu Tresarrieu brushing aside Lewis Blackbird on the opening lap for another maximum as the points spread rose to 39-27.
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The 20 year old was out yet again in Heat 12, briefly holding a 5-1 with Simon Lambert before the latter fell under pressure from the Tactically nominated Ales Dryml and then going it alone for another victory to limit the double points damage to a 5-3 and leave Rye ahead 42-34.
Peterborough staged a late fight-back – with Garrity excluded under the two minutes time allowance in Heat 14 – to bring the score back to 45-41 heading into the nominated race, but their charge stalled at the final hurdle as Ostergaard’s involvent lasted less than 30 metres due to mechanical gremlins and Kennett rounded off a superb personal afternoon by heading home Lasse Bjerre and Steve Boxall.
The resultant 4-2 gave the Rockets a final 6 point winning margin, although the Panthers left town with a consolation match point.
On the individual front, Kennett once again proved a rock for Rye at No.1, dropping his only point to Bjerre in Heat 13 but also beating the Dane in their other two encounters. Steve Boxall also weighed in with double figures, while Luke Bowen looked more than comfortable in his new role at No.2.
But there was no denying that Jason Garrity was the game changer, and also that his revitalised form could hold the key to the Rockets’ hopes in the forthcoming Premier League programme and Knock-Out Cup.
The rider himself was delighted with the way the last week has gone. “I feel so much better on the bike now again. Everything is coming back.
“My engines came back for the British Semi-Final, and I had a good night there, and I felt that I could go out and give it a real go again today.
“The one negative was when I dropped the oil before my final race and ripped out the threads so the oil plug wouldn’t go back. I couldn’t take the risk of going out there and blowing the engine up, because of the cost.
“I’ve finally got my frames sorted out my last three or four meetings. I invested in new frames for the season, and it cost me a lot of money, but it really backfired on me. When the engine was getting hot, it would move and the bike was flexing when I was racing and losing me that vital second.
“But it’s sorted now, and I’m feeling ready to race again.”
Rye House: Edward Kennett 14 (5 rides), Jason Garrity 12+1 (6), Steve Boxall 10 (5), Luke Bowen 4+2 (4), Mathieu Tresarrieu 4+2 (4), Simon Lambert 3+1 (5), Jason Bunyan 2 (3).
Peterborough: Lasse Bjerre 12 (5 rides), Oliver Greenwood 8+3 (5), Ales Dryml 7 (4 rides, inc 4 as a TR), Lewis Blackbird 6 (4), Ulrich Ostergaard 6 (5), Ryan Fisher 3 (4), Joe Jacobs 1 (3).
Match Points: Rye House 2 Peterborough 1