Poole Pirates v Wolverhampton Wolves17/06/19
The Pirates began the evening celebrating having their chosen one-to-seven back as a unit for the first time since May 6th, but within a heat they were reduced to just six men as Jack Holder was forced to withdraw with a groin injury sustained when hurtling into the air-fence on the pit turn.
With Wolverhampton firing in a 5-1 in the re-run of the heat, Poole fans might have been forgiven for fearing the worse but through Nikolai Klindt, Brady Kurtz and Nico Covatti all picking up impressive heat wins and Josh Grajczonek providing a vital back-up role - the skipper earning five out of six bonus points on the night - the Pirates had the league points sealed away with two races to spare.
Covatti opened his account with a determined inside line drive to assume the lead in heat two but still had to be on his guard against a lively looking Luke Bekker and there were two good moves by Klindt and Grajczonek alike in heat three to combine for a match levelling 5-1. Wolverhampton kicked on again through a comfortable 5-1 constructed by Rory Schlein and Bekker in heat four and the Pirates were left having to do all the hard work just to share the fifth with Klindt and Grajczonek finding their respective ways past Kyle Howarth.
With Kurtz leading in heat six, Worrall seemed to be on course to allow Poole to level-up again but all his hard work to get to the front was in vain as Schlein outwitted him off the final turn enabling the Pirates only to cut the deficit by half. A speedy Covattil never looked back once he hit daylight, knowing perciptively that partner Kurtz was backing up as Poole moved ahead for the first time on the night.
Events conspired against the luckless Worrall, who was leading the first running of heat eight when Bekker took a fall in third place. Howarth took advantage of the three-man restart to beat Nikolaj Busk-Jakobsen and Worrall to keep the meeting preciously tight at 25-23 in favour of Poole. An unchallenged 5-1 combination from Klindt and Grajczonek however gave the home side some breathing space but there was drama on the last lap when Ashley Morris locked up on the south turn and landed heavily.
Heat 10 produced a great show of speedway as Worrall and Grajczonek hit the front over tactical substitute Sam Masters, the Wolves riding giving the Pirates plenty to contend with before they could confirm the maximum heat score and extend their lead into double figures (35-25). Masters wasted little time in making some amends as he pulled clear in heat 11 leaving Kurtz to do all the chasing. With Howarth in third the Wolves were showing they were far from done for. Busk-Jakobsen's efforts in heat 12 were thwarted but Klindt was creating his third win of the night. He then made it four from five starts backed up ably by Kurtz as Poole sealed the victory with two heats to go.
The first of those went Wolves' way as Nick Morris scored for the first time in three, following home partner Bekker for the 5-1 that at least gave the Black Country side a chance of a consolation, although Klindt and Grajczonek were in no benevolent mood as they paired up for the third time to score a 5-1 to resolve the meeting 51-39.
Ht 1: S.Masters, K.Howarth, R.Worrall, J.Holder (Fell d/q) 1-5 1-5 |58.91]
Ht 2: N.Covatti, L.Bekker, A.Morris, N.Busk-Jakobsen 3-3 4-8 [59.97]
Ht 3: N.Klindt, J.Grajczonek, J.Thorssell, N.Morris (Rtd) 5-1 9-9 [59.4]
Ht 4: R.Schlein, L.Bekker, B.Kurtz, N.Busk-Jakobsen (Rtd) 1-5 10-14 [59.91]
Ht 5: S.Masters, N.Klindt, J.Grajczonek, K.Howarth 3-3 13-17 [59.91]
Ht 6: B.Kurtz, R.Schlein, R.Worrall, A.Morris 4-2 17-19 [60.41]
Ht 7: N.Covatti, B.Kurtz, J.Thorssell, N.Morris (Rtd) 5-1 22-20 [60.41]
Ht 8: K.Howarth, N.Busk-Jakobsen, R.Worrall, L.Bekker (Fell d/q) 3-3 25-23 [61.41]
Ht 9: N.Klindt, J.Grajczonek, R.Schlein, A.Morris 5-1 30-24 [60.22]
Ht 10: R.Worrall, J.Grajczonek, S.Masters (TS), J.Thorssell 5-1 35-25 [61.53]
Ht 11: S.Masters, B.Kurtz, K.Howarth, N.Covatti 2-4 37-29 [60.56]
Ht 12: N.Klindt, L.Bekker, J.Thorssell, N.Busk-Jakobsen 3-3 40-32 [60.85]
Ht 13: N.Klindt, B.Kurtz, S.Masters, R.Schlein 5-1 45-33 [60.47]
Ht 14: L.Bekker, N.Morris, N.Covatti, J.Grajczonek 1-5 46-38 [61.13]
Ht 15: N.Klindt, J.Grajczonek, S.Masters, K.Howarth 5-1 51-39 [61.22]
Gates: WOLVERHAMPTON won toss and chose gates 1&3 | POOLE took gates 1&3 in heat 15
Referee Chris Durno
League Points POOLE 3 WOLVERHAMPTON 0
Rider of the Night: N.Klindt