Speedway: Tigers take Pairs title at Oaktree Arena
PUBLISHED: 08:22 21 September 2019 | UPDATED: 08:22 21 September 2019
Glasgow Tigers duo Craig Cook and Rasmus Jensen had the perfect warm-up for their SGB Championship League play-off visit to the Oaktree Arena that looms next Wednesday, by winning the 2019 SGB Championship pairs.
The Scottish club pairing dropped just three points in the four qualifying heats to top the qualifiers and then storm into the final with a 7-2 demolition of title defenders Sheffield who had crept into the final four by virtue of the fact that they had the better constitution of 20 points than Scunthorpe, having twice won maximum heats.
On a night that was littered with top class racing, with often no distance at all between riders the night reached a thrilling climax when the league's top two sides, Leicester and Glasgow met in the final.
Cook made a super start and solid first turn to wrench the lead from the impressive Ryan Douglas, the Leicester man then glancing over his shoulder to see partner Scott Nicholls hovering in third.
But former Rebel Jensen was about to turn the heat up on a glorious day and the trading places began in earnest. With perfect timing the Dane just managed to find a way by as the race came to it's conclusion and his snatching of third place meant the title was heading north of the border, leaving winner Cook paying tribute to the Glasgow fans and clubs.
"I have really enjoyed my racing since I've been at Glasgow, it is a real pleasure to ride for the club and the fans are absolutely terrific and always there supporting us," said Cook.
"I am so pleased to be able to give at least something back by helping to win this title. It was tough and Razzer did the passing just when he needed to. We are going to enjoy this success."
Somerset's hopes of taking the crown came under real pressure when the Sheffield pair of Danny King and Kyle Howarth inflicted a 7-2 on the Rebels in the second heat of the night.
But then a superb ride from Nick Morris in heat 10 to battle by the Edinburgh pair of Cameron Heeps and late replacement Ricky Wells in their second ride movec Somerset on to nine points and Schlein was able to split Cook and Jensen in heat 15.
But by the time they came out for their final heat, with Leicester their opponents, qualification was beyond them and Douglas and Nicholls clocked a 6-3, that secured the Lions' place in the semis.
Next up at the OakTree is that mouth-watering semi-final play-off against Glasgow on Wednesday night, with the return leg taking place two nights later.
Qualifying scores: Glasgow 25 (Craig Cook 12+3, Rasmus Jensen 13), Leicester 21 (Scott Nicholls 9+1, Ryan Douglas 12), Birmingham 22 (Adam Ellis 12+1, Tero Aarnio 10+1), Sheffield 20 (Danny King 14, Kyle Howarth 6+2), Scunthorpe 20 (Ben Barker 7+1, Jake Allen 13+1), Redcar 19 (Erik Riss 6, Jordan Stewart 13+1), Eastbourne 18 (Richard Lawson 12+1, Lewis Kerr 6+1), Newcastle 15 (Steve Worrall 12, Lasse Bjerre 3+1), Somerset 15 (Rory Schlein 7, Nick Morris 8+1), Edinburgh 13 (Ricky Wells 8+1, Cameron Heeps 5), Berwick 10 (Tomas H Jonasson 10, Jye Etheridge 0).
Ht 1 Adam Ellis, Richard Lawson, Lewis Kerr, Tero Aarnio.
Ht 2 Danny King, Kyle Howarth, Nick Morris, Rory Schlein.
Ht 3 Rasmus Jensen, Craig Cook, Steve Worrall, Lasse Bjerre.
Ht 4 Erik Riss, Jordan Stewart, Tomas H Jonasson, Jye Etheridge (fell exc).
Ht 5 Ricky Wells, Ben Barker, Jake Allen, Cameron Heeps.
Ht 6 Scott Nicholls, Danny King, Ryan Douglas, Kyle Howarth.
Ht 7 Adam Ellis, Tero Aarnio, Steve Worrall, Lasse Bjerre.
Ht 8 Jordan Stewart, Richard Lawson, Erik Riss, Lewis Kerr.
Ht 9 Jake Allen, Rasmus Jensen, Craig Cook, Ben Barker.
Ht 10 Rory Schlein, Nick Morris, Ricky Wells, Cameron Heeps.
Ht 11 Ryan Douglas, Scott Nicholls, Tomas H Jonasson, Jye Etheridge.
Ht 12 Tero Aarnio, Danny King, Adam Ellis, Kyle Howarth.
Ht 13 Lewis Kerr, Richard Lawson, Cameron Heeps, Ricky Wells.
Ht 14 Steve Worrall, Lasse Bjerre, Jordan Stewart, Erik Riss.
Ht 15 Craig Cook, Rory Schlein, Rasmus Jensen, Nick Morris.
Ht 16 Tomas H Jonasson, Jake Allen, Ben Barker, Jye Etheridge (NS).
Ht 17 Rasmus Jensen, Craig Cook, Ryan Douglas, Scott Nicholls.
Ht 18 Jordan Stewart, Tero Aarnio, Adam Ellis, Erik Riss.
Ht 19 Jake Allen, Richard Lawson, Ben Barker, Lewis Kerr.
Ht 20 Danny King, Kyle Howarth, Tomas H Jonasson, Jye Etheridge (NS).
Ht 21 Steve Worrall, Cameron Heeps, Ricky Wells, Lasse Bjerre.
Ht 22 Ryan Douglas, Nick Morris, Scott Nicholls, Rory Schlein.
Semi 1 Craig Cook, Rasmus Jensen, Kyle Howarth, Danny King.
Semi 2 Adam Ellis, Ryan Douglas, Scott Nicholls, Tero Aarnio.
Final Craig Cook, Ryan Douglas, Rasmus Jensen, Scott Nicholls.