By Jamie Arrowsmith Wednesday 09 October 2013 Updated: 09/10 17:26
Poole Pirates 57 Birmingham Brummies 36
Elite League Grand Final First Leg
BRUMMIES left themselves a huge mountain to climb in the second leg when falling to a heavy defeat at Poole on Monday night.
The visitors struggled for consistency throughout the night on a bumpy circuit, though conditions were the same for both sides and Poole capitalised to full effect.
The night started in the worst possible fashion for Brummies as Jason Doyle was excluded from heat one for touching the tapes.
To rub salt into Doyle’s wounds, both Darcy Ward and Thomas H Jonasson immediately paired up for the Pirates first 5-1 of the night - the first of six in total.
Three shared heats followed as Chris Harris became Birmingham’s first heat winner in heat four, but team-mate Josh Auty suffered mechanical issues in the race.
The Doyle/Smolinski partnership once again failed to reap any rewards as an inspired Pirates side opened up a ten-point gap by the conclusion of heat six as Ward got the better of Harris in a tough first bend.
Danny King looked to earn Brummies fans some respite in heat seven as he went out on the tactical, however the skipper lost control of the rear end entering turn three, causing him to fall as Poole’s Grajczonek and Janowski picked up a routine 5-1 in the re-run.
Doyle became Brummies’ second heat winner of the night - whilst on a tactical - as he shot around the boards in a brave move to bring Birmingham within 11 points of the home side and rescue some hope in keeping the scores close.
In-form Aussie Josh Grajczonek could not quite hold off Harris in the following race as Poole took a 4-2, though a 5-1 seemed to further dampen spirits in the Birmingham camp as the irresistible Ward/Jonasson pair picked up their third 5-1 of the night.
Wins for Doyle and King steadied Brummies’ ship as they chipped away at Poole’s lead, though a Janowski led 5-1 in heat 13 for the Pirates inflicted further damage with two heats remaining.
Ben Barker picked up his sole win of the evening in heat 14 as Nico Covatti may have consider himself fortunate to hold onto third as smoke from the back of the Italian’s bike significantly reduced his progress in the final lap.
Heat 15 saw both Hancock and Ward team up for their first ever 5-1 as Pirates’ pairing ensured Poole won 57-36 on the night.
Poole Pirates 57: Darcy Ward 13+2; Thomas H. Jonasson 9+2; Greg Hancock 14; Maciej Janowski 8+2; Josh Grajczonek 10+2; Kyle Newman (G) 3+1.
Birmingham Brummies 36: Martin Smolinski 2; Jason Doyle 11; Daniel King 5; Ben Barker 6+1; Chris Harris 7; Nicolas Covatti 3+1; Josh Auty 2.
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