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Date added: 09 September 2010

Swindon 51 Lakeside 43 

Russell takes the positive out of win and looks to next season
LAKESIDE were denied a place in the end-of-season Play-Offs, as Swindon continued their recent run of good form to beat the Hammers 51-44 and collect all 3 Elite League points, in the process elevating themselves to sixth place in the standings.
Skipper Leigh Adams top-scored with 13 points, whilst Simon Stead bagged 10+2. Elsewhere, exciting Pole Maciek Janowski carried on where he left off in the previous Friday's corresponding fixture at Lakeside to card an excellent 9+2 tally.
The Hammers' score-chart was headed by two former Robins in Lee Richardson, who notched an excellently acquired 16-point haul, whilst Peter Ljung posted 11+1. Adams set the ball rolling with an all-the-way success over Richardson in heat one, with Mads Korneliussen's third-place giving Swindon an early lead.
Morten Risager shed a chain as he approached the tapes in heat two, but Stead came to the rescue with his machine as the Dane comfortably beat the 2-minute time allowance. And, although Stuart Robson hit the front early doors, both Gathercole and Risager surged through before the Lakeside No. 7 eventually retired.
Ljung rocketed away from the outside grid in heat three and peeled away for a fine victory, as the Polish duo of Grzegorz Zengota and Janowski split the points. 'Steady' and Adam Shields clashed on the first bend of heat four, with the Aussie - on the outside - taking a forceful trip into the air safety barrier.
All four riders were permitted in the re-run, which saw Stead conjure a sublime inside pass of Shields on the home straight of lap three to win the race. Janowski rode a tidy line to hold Richardson at bay and win a shared heat five, before a re-run heat six resulted in Adams' second victory of the night.
Behind, Korneliussen raced in daredevil fashion to pass Shields, before the Aussie returned the favour. However, the Hammers' No. 5 subsequently retired, as Swindon claimed a 4-2 to move 23-13 ahead.
 Heat seven took three attempts to run as, firstly, Robson fell on the pits corner. Then, Gathercole came to grief on the second bend whilst probing on the outside. That left a match-race situation, with Steady easily defeating Nieminen. Lakeside attempted to cut into their deficit by nominating Ljung for a tactical outing in heat eight and the Swede didn't disappoint as he grabbed 6 points. The chasing Korneliussen tumbled down and with Neath - another ex-Swindon rider - filling third place behind Risager, the Hammers' 7-2 reduced the Robins' advantage to just 6 points.
The Polish duo of Zengota and Janowski came back with the perfect riposte, however, as they hit a 5-1 in heat nine, both of them superbly passing Shields during the race. Adams rounded Shields to complete a hat-trick of race wins in heat ten, whilst Korneliussen's third place took him to the magical landmark of 1,000 points in the Robins' colours in all competitions. In a final tactical throw of the dice, Richardson took a tactical ride for the visitors in heat eleven.
As the tapes rose, it was Ljung who sped away to lead, whilst Richardson reeled in and passed Stead on the third bend before moving ahead of his partner.
Stead then showed his trademark battling qualities to overhaul Ljung on the third lap, as Lakeside recorded their second 7-2 of the match and cut Swindon's lead to 7 points.
Nieminen propelled himself to victory via a fast outside getaway in a heat twelve points-share, before Richardson lowered Adams' colours in race thirteen after taking a speedy outside route around the Aussie on the third bend. Janowski won the penultimate heat from Nieminen and Neath, celebrating his fine night's work with some wonderful wheelies for the Blunsdon faithful.
In a tremendous conclusion, a re-run nominated heat saw Richardson daringly pass both Stead and then Adams after racing right the way around the outside on the pits turn to take the lead entering the home straight. There was no catching the British ace after that as an enjoyable meeting - which was diligently and well-handled by Christina Turnbull - had a fitting finale.
photos by Ian Lewis
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