Ipswich Witches 53, Somerset Rebels 41

SOMERSET Rebels were unable to build on an impressive performance at Peterborough, as they went down 53-41 at Ipswich.

The Rebels were very much second best and paid the price in a match that saw precious little overtaking throughout the entire 15 heats.

Somerset soon found themselves four points in arrears, a maximum heat race win in the second heat setting Ipswich on their way, but for the first lap and a quarter of heat three it looked as if Somerset were on their way to restoring parity.

As they crossed the line at the end of the opening lap the pair had already established a healthy lead, but a combination of inexperience and youthful exuberance saw Kurtz run into the first turn with what appeared to be too much speed which saw the 17 year old Aussie come to grief, despite his best efforts to retrieve the situation.

With just over a third of the match gone, Somerset trailed the Witches by 10 points, prompting team manager Garry May to reach for the black and white helmet colour, Pontus Aspgren given the responsibility of the double-point tactical ride.

The move proved to be a partial success as although Risager won the heat, with Aspgren and Brady Kurtz filling in for the minor placings, it did give Somerset their first heat advantage of the night, albeit by just a slender two points.

The Rebels joy was, however, short-lived as Ipswich responded with another maximum race in heat eight to put the Witches 12 points to the good.

Heat 10 was to see Somerset's most productive pairing, Aspgren and Brady Kurtz come to the tapes, and with Aspgren getting the better of Ipswich's Worrall into the first turn, and he quickly established a good lead while Kurtz was starting to put Worrall under immense pressure for second place.

Ipswich moved that lead back out to 12 points with a 4-2 heat win of their own, Ipswich reserve Adam Ellis heading home Somerset guest rider Josh Grajczonek, the 2013 Rebel having a below-par night as replacement for the unavailable Nick Morris.

Somerset reserve Charles Wright flew from the tapes in heat 12 to take the race win - and then combined with Pontus Aspgren to give Somerset a maximum 5-1 heat win, but they were unable to earn a point with a carbon copy in the final heat.