Thursday June 09, 2011
BIRMINGHAM face an uphill battle to continue in this season’s Knockout Cup after a rain-curtailed defeat against Lakeside at Perry Barr.

The Hammers will take a five-point lead into Friday’s second leg at Purfleet after an impressive performance in a meeting where conditions became difficult after a downpour just after the halfway stage.

Brummies suffered an early setback when Krzysztof Kasprzak crashed on the first bend in the first race, and they struggled to contain the fast-starting of Lee Richardson and Piotr Swiderski – who also produced a spectacular dive between Kasprzak and Ulrich Ostergaard in Heat 6.

Brummies, who missed the influence of Ben Barker, dropped twelve points behind after Heat 8 and as the rain came down Danny King’s tactical ride was negated by Swiderski’s third win of the night in the next race.

Conditions became tougher with race times more than six seconds off usual dry-weather pace, but the home side did gain significant points back in Heat 12 when the returning Ostergaard and Claus Vissing combined for an 8-1 after the Hammers’ Stuart Robson had come to grief.

That result shot Ostergaard to the top of the Brummies’ scorechart, but it was also the end of racing for the night as although the rain had stopped the two sets of riders were in agreement that track conditions had become too dangerous to continue.

BIRMINGHAM 36: Ulrich Ostergaard 12, Daniel King 9, Daniel Nermark 7+2, Claus Vissing 3+1, James Wright 3, Krzystzof Kasprzak 2+2, Joe Screen r/r.

LAKESIDE 41: Lee Richardson 12, Piotr Swiderski 10, Peter Ljung 8, Stuart Robson 5+1, Kauko Nieminen 4+2, Robert Mear 2+1, Adam Shields r/r.

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