Swindon’s record-breaking winning run came to an end as they went down 46-29 in a rain-shortened meeting at Rye House.
The Carpets4Less Robins headed to Hoddesdon having secured their spot at the top of the SGB Premiership with 17 straight victories.
But they tasted defeat for the first time since May on a night where they were without injured reserve duo Bradley Wilson-Dean and Zach Wajtknecht plus Great Britain Under 21 international Adam Ellis.
It was a tough night for Alun Rossiter’s side, who claimed just three race wins against a Rockets’ side fighting to keep their play-off hopes alive.
Yet Rossiter insists they will pick themselves up and respond with the all-important play-offs on the horizon.
Said Rossiter: “We’re disappointed, but realistically we only had half a team and it was always going to be tough.
“Full credit to Rye House, they were the better team and deserved their victory so we can’t have any complaints.
“Obviously it’s a bit of a worry that David (Bellego) is struggling with his engines at the moment, and we need to get him going again.
“But hopefully we’ll pick ourselves back up and step things up a gear again ready for the play-offs.”
Heat-leader duo Jason Doyle and Nick Morris both impressed, with Morris claiming a tactical ride victory in heat six.
Tobiasz Musielak also fought hard for paid nine in the engine room of the side, whilst guesting No.6 Tero Aarnio added 5+1 on a busy night.
But David Bellego and guest George Hunter both failed to score as the Rockets had too much strength around their technical home circuit.
The Robins will be back in action as they head to Wolverhampton in their final regular season fixture on Monday (7.30).
RYE HOUSE 46: Ricky Wells 9+1, Krzysztof Kasprzak 8+1, Ben Barker 8, Scott Nicholls 8, Chris Harris 6+2, Stuart Robson 4+2, Ben Morley 4.
SWINDON 29: Nick Morris 9, Tobiasz Musielak 7+2, Jason Doyle 7, Tero Aarnio 6, David Bellego 0 George Hunter 0, Adam Ellis r/r.
Abandoned after 12 heats – Result STANDS