Cases Somerset Rebels start their quest to end the 2012 speedway season with double trophy success at the Oaktree Arena tonight.
The Rebels entertain Ipswich Witches at the Highbridge track in the first leg of the Premier League Cup Final, with the action getting under way at 7.30pm.
While Ipswich may not have fulfilled the pundits' predictions as far as the Premier League Championship is concerned - the Witches finished sixth overall - they have more than made up for that in qualifying for the finals of both the League Cup and Knockout Cup competitions.
There has bee little overall to choose between the two sides when they have met previously this year, with Ipswich favouring a more ‘strength in depth’ look to their septet - there is just over a point’s difference between their top six riders.
The side is led by Leigh Lanham, who just missed out on a place in Sunday’s Premier League Riders’ Championship Final, and he is backed up by three Australian riders - Australian under-21 champion Taylor Poole, the exciting talent that is Rohan Tungate and ex-Rebel Dakota North.
Dane Morten Risager and Frenchman Mathieu Tresarrieu are also in the Witches squad.
The final team place should also be filled by the Witches' fourth Australian, Cameron Heeps, but injury keeps him from Friday night’s eagerly anticipated encounter, and his place will be taken by a National League guest replacement.
The Rebels will have to overcome the shock loss of inspirational skipper Jason Doyle, who broke a bone in his neck as a result of a fall in Sunday’s Riders’ Championship meeting at Sheffield.
But the Somerset promotion have brought Ryan Fisher, a rider who has always excelled in his previous visits to the Oaktree Arena, as a guest replacement for Doyle.
Fisher is the current Somerset Open Champion, having won the title last year with a 15-point maximum score.
“There is everything to play for," said Rebels promoter Debbie Hancock.
"Both sides have been well matched on their previous encounters this year, so it has all the makings of being a close run affair.
“What we would now like, apart from some good weather of course, is for Somerset fans to turn up in their droves at the Oaktree Arena on Friday night to support the team as the boys look build up a healthy first leg advantage to defend when we go to Ipswich’s Foxhall Stadium for next week’s second leg.”