Danny King declared himself ‘gutted’ after putting up a gallant defence of the British title on Monday night.
The Huntingdon racer reached the semi-final at the National Speedway Stadium, in Manchester, despite riding through the pain of a shoulder injury.
King racked up 10 points from his five qualifying rides before bowing out when finishing at the rear in the semi.
“I’m gutted not to have retained the title, but it wasn’t meant to be” admitted King, who rides for the Leicester and Ipswich clubs.
“It was hard to watch the final and see someone else lift the trophy, but I’ll be doing everything I can to win it back again next year.
“I had the outside gate for the semi-final and there wasn’t a lot I could do from there. I found myself stuck in traffic for most of the race.
“I battled as hard as I could. The injury didn’t help, but I couldn’t use that as an excuse. I didn’t really notice it when I was out on track.”
Belle Vue rider Craig Cook, who had the advantage of racing on his home track, succeeded King as British champion when winning the title for the first time.