Wednesday October 14, 2009
BIRMINGHAM'S quest for automatic promotion to the Elite League is over for another year following a 55-35 defeat at King's Lynn on Wednesday evening.

The Brummies faced an uphill task going into the fixture at the Norfolk Arena trailing by four points from the first leg at Perry Barr and it will be the Stars that go through to face Edinburgh as a result of a 102-78 aggregate victory. The winners will then take on Belle Vue for the right to host top-flight speedway next season.

As for the meeting itself it was Birmingham who actually made the better start. Three heat advantages in the first four races, including a 5-1 from Richard Sweetman and Ludvig Lindgren, put them into a 14-10 lead, but the Stars who have been unbeaten at home all season immediately hit back to draw level in heat 5.

Jason Lyons suffered a heavy fall in heat 6 and with the Brummies skipper excluded from the re-run, another 5-1 was conceded.

Lyons was reported to have been feeling unwell before the start of the meeting and after his fall he was withdrawn on medical grounds. With this Birmingham fell further behind and the tie was effectively over as they trailed 32-22 after nine races.

The Brummies suffered more misfortune when Lindgren fell whilst leading on a tactical ride in heat 10 and then the same double-point fate befell guest Cory Gathercole when in third place in heat 11.

This left the visitors trailing 40-26, and with the Stars finishing strongly in the final three races they ran out comfortable winners.

KING’S LYNN 55: Chris Schramm 14+1, Chris Kerr 13+1, Emiliano Sanchez 11+1, Jan Graversen 9, Linus Eklof 5+2, Darcy Ward 3+1, Kozza Smith R/R.

BIRMINGHAM 35: Richard Sweetman 9+1, Rusty Harrison 7, Ludvig Lindgren 6+2, Jay Herne 6, Jason Lyons 3, Cory Gathercole 2, Lee Smart 2.

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