Panthers heap the misery on sorry Hammers
Monday July 03, 2020
Elite League - Monday 3rd July, 2006

Arena Essex 42 Panthers 48 Sky Sports Elite League A

In a season where nothing is going right for the Arena Essex Hammers other than the fact that they dumped Peterborough out of the KO Cup, Panthers well and truly rubbed their noses back in the Purfleet dirt with a their third away victory on the trot on a track where they traditionally struggle.

Once again the big three, still missing their classy team mate Jesper B Jensen, did their club proud as did the remaining members of the side who all gave their all for the clubs charge towards the play-offs.

As at Oxford last week, Arena Essex looked to be gaining the upper hand mid-meeting only for Panthers to dig deep and show remarkable resolve before taking the two Elite League points comfortably in the end by 48-42. Panthers welcomed back food poisoning victim Karol Zabik, resplendent in his new club race-suit for the first time. Arena Essex also used the rider-replacement facility to cover for injury victim Joonas Kylmakorpi.

Andersen lead the charge with an opening heat race win but Ulrich Ostergaard, after making a good start, was overcome by Max and Hurry in a shared 3-3 heat. Heat two saw Richard Hall claim a very confident tapes to flag victory on a track you would not mark down as one of his favourites and it was heat 3 before the lucrative Iversen/Sullivan pairing gained their first heat advantage of the night with a victory over Johnston and Lanham.

It was clear even at an early stage that it was going to be nip and tuck throughout as the next two races were drawn affairs before Arena snatched a 4-2 of their own over Iversen and Hall to level proceedings in heat 6. A re-run heat 7, after Werner had moved at the tapes, proved profitable for Panthers as once again the Sullivan/Iversen partnership netted a 4-2 with Sullivan this time taking the victory.

Heat 8 was always looking a weak race for the Panthers and got worse just after the tapes had risen as Zabikís bike spluttered to a halt. Bager and Hurry gained the only Hammers 5-1 of the night over a disappointing Ostergaard. In probably the race of the night in heat 9, Hans Andersen was beaten for the only time in the meeting by Steve Johnston. Andersen was baulked on the first bend and spent the next 4 laps constantly looking for a way past the Arena pairing eventually picking off Lanham in style before only just missing out on overtaking Johnston on the run in to the finish.

Panthers at this stage were 29-25 down to the Hammers but it was as if this was the cue to hit overdrive because from then on they were simply awesome. A heat 11 4-2 was sandwiched by two 5-1ís practically sealing the match for Peterborough. The telling rides came from the struggling Ulrich Ostergaard who gained a third place over Brent Werner in heat 11 to clinch a 4-2 with the outstanding Andersen. Then followed a quite simply awesome ride from Richard Hall in heat 12 when he paired up with Ryan Sullivan for a crucial 5-1 over Steve Johnston and Henning Bager. Three race wins (two from Andersen and one from Iversen) were the story of the final 3 races which were all 3-3ís as Panthers gained a hard fought 48-42 win on a track where normally half of the team are not comfortable.

A home victory on Thursday against Coventry would without doubt send Panthers fans into the Speedway World Cup recess in an extremely jubilant mood! The clubs play-off push is now firmly on track and next on the menu are the Coventry Bees this coming Thursday 6th July at 7.30pm at the East of England Showground.


1. Mikael Max 2, 3, 1, 2, 2, 1' = 11+1
2. Paul Hurry 1', 2, 1, 2, 0 = 6+2
3. Steve Johnston 0, 2, 3, 1, 1' = 7+1
4. Leigh Lanham 2, 1', 2, 1, 2, 2 = 10+1
5. Joonas Kylmakorpi R/R
6. Brent Werner 2, 0, 0 = 2
7. Henning Bager 1', 1', 3, 0, 1' = 6+3


1. Hans Andersen 3, 3, 2, 3, 3, 3 = 17
2. Ulrich Ostergaard 0, 0, 1, 1 = 2
3. Ryan Sullivan 1, 3, 3, 3, 3, 0 = 13
4. Niels Kristian Iversen 3, 2, 1, 2', 3 = 11+1
5. Jesper Jensen R/R
6. Richard Hall 3, 0, 0, 2', 0, 0 = 5+1
7. Karol Zabik 0, 0, ef = 0

Panthers won the toss and took gates 1&3

Heat Results
Heat 01: Andersen, Max, Hurry, Ostergaard 3-3
Heat 02: Re-run Hall, Werner, Bager, Zabik 3-3 6-6
Heat 03: Iversen, Lanham, Sullivan, Johnston 2-4 8-10
Heat 04: Sullivan, Hurry, Bager, Zabik 3-3 11-13
Heat 05: Andersen, Johnston, Lanham, Ostergaard 3-3 14-16
Heat 06: Max, Iversen, Hurry, Hall 4-2 18-18
Heat 07: Sullivan, Lanham, Iversen, Werner 2-4 20-22
Heat 08: Bager, Hurry, Ostergaard, Zabik ef 5-1 25-23
Heat 09: Johnston, Andersen, Lanham, Hall 4-2 29-25
Heat 10: Sullivan, Iversen, Hurry, Max 1-5 30-30
Heat 11: Andersen, Max, Ostergaard, Werner 2-4 32-34
Heat 12: Sullivan, Hall, Johnston, Bager 1-5 33-39
Heat 13: Andersen, Max, Johnston, Hall 3-3 36-42
Heat 14: Iversen, Lanham, Bager, Hall 3-3 39-45
Heat 15: Andersen, Lanham, Max, Sullivan 3-3 42-48

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