Sunday July 24, 2020
PETERBOROUGH promoter Ged Rathbone declared ‘speedway is the winner’ following a spectacular weekend of Premier League Fours racing.

A packed programme of 73 races across two days at the East of England Showground came down to a three-way, last-heat decider for trophy glory.

Plymouth and Workington went into the 16th and closing contest in the Fours final locked together in the standings with hosts Peterborough only a couple of points behind.

And it was home captain Ulrich Ostergaard who made the best start before finding himself swamped with the decisive move arriving later on the opening lap as Brady Kurtz swept to the front to take victory for the Devils on 30 points.

Track specialist Kenneth Hansen give chase for Workington as they finished on 29, although he could not recover from being held up behind Ostergaard, who dropped to the rear as Peterborough had to settle for third with 25 points. Berwick were a distant last on 12.

Rathbone said: “I thought it might be our day as we started well in the final, but we just couldn’t keep it going.

“Plymouth rode very well all weekend and deserved their success, but speedway is the winner as far as I’m concerned.

“I’m very glad I made the suggestion of giving the Fours a big shake-up. Supporters are a huge part of this sport and they have turned out in force.

“The weekend has been a fantastic success and we’ve also learned a lot to make sure it continues to get bigger and better year-by-year.

“We’ve had proved we are capable of putting on a top show and we'll look forward to hopefully being able to do the same again in the future."

Peterborough led after the first block of races in the Fours final with Craig Cook and Ostergaard providing victories to follow up an opening second place from Tom Perry and a third spot for Nikolaj Busk Jakobsen.

They were still in pole position at the half-way stage with a Busk Jakobsen success and a Cook second spot adding to their tally, although an exclusion for Ostergaard after Berwick man Theo Pijper hit the deck on the opening lap of heat eight was a blow.

By three-quarters distance, Peterborough had dropped into a share of second spot with Workington and Plymouth were looking the team to beat.

They briefly hit the front following a second successive Jack Holder triumph in heat nine before edging back into an advantage when Todd Kurtz held off Workington man Rasmus Jensen in a cracking heat 12 scrap.

Holder ensured he finished as the star individual performer by also taking the flag in heat 13 to complete his own 11-point contribution, but Peterborough weren’t about to disappear quietly.

Cook zoomed clear of Workington rider Claus Vissing in a re-run penultimate affair to leave his side with an outside change of lifting the trophy in the re-run.

But it wasn’t to be as Brady Kurtz picked the perfect moment to negotiate the traffic and earn a sweet success for a Plymouth club which almost closed on the eve of the 2016 season.

1 Plymouth 30 (Jack Holder 11, Brady Kurtz 7, Todd Kurtz 7, Kyle Newman 5).
2 Workington 29 (Kenneth Hansen 10, Claus Vissing 7, Ricky Werlls 7, Rasmus Jensen 5).
3 Peterborough 25 (Craig Cook 11, Nikolaj Busk Jakobsen 7, Ulrich Ostergaard 4, Tom Perry 2, Emil Grondal (res) 1).
4 Berwick 12 (Kevin Doolan 4, Matthew Wethers 4, Thomas Jorgensen 3, Theo Pijper 1).

1 - Wethers (61.8), Perry, B. Kurtz, Vissing.
2 - Hansen (60.9), T. Kurtz, Busk Jakobsen, Pijper.
3 - Cook (60.4), Holder, Doolan, Jensen.
4 - Ostergaard (62.0), Newman, Wells, Jorgensen.
5 - Wells (61.6), Doolan, T. Kurtz, Perry.
6 - re-run x2 Busk Jakobsen (62.3), Jorgensen, B. Kurtz, Jensen (15m).
7 - Hansen (61.4), Cook, Wethers, Newman.
8 - re-run x2 Holder (62.6), Vissing, Pijper, Ostergaard (exc).
9 - Holder (61.7), Hansen, Jorgensen, Perry.
10 - Vissing (62.9), Busk Jakobsen, Newman, Doolan.
11 - Cook (62.1), B. Kurtz, Wells, Pijper.
12 - T. Kurtz (63.0), Jensen, Ostergaard, Wethers.
13 - Holder (62.9), Wells, Busk Jakobsen, Wethers.
14 - Jensen (63.0), Newman, Grondal, Pijper.
15 - re-run Cook (63.1), Vissing, T. Kurtz, Jorgebnsen (fell/exc).
16 - B. Kurtz (63.2), Hansen, Doolan, Ostergaard.

* The earlier individual event was won by Scunthorpe racer Ryan Douglas.

The Australian held off Steve Worrall (Newcastle) and Ben Barker (Ipswich) in a re-run finale. The initial staging was halted with Richie Worrall (Glasgow) excluded as the cause of a spell for his twin brother.


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