A depleted Parsons Peebles Monarchs battled hard before going down 48-45 at Peterborough this evening in a result that gathers them a point in the SGB Championship.
The Monarchs made a decent start and actually led 19-17 with 6 heats gone. However a weak middle order with Erik Riss missing due to German commitments being replaced by National League rider Ben Morley and Max Clegg struggling on the big pacey track meant that victory was unlikely and two 5-1’s against this pairing in heats 7 and 10 were a step too far as the meeting threatened to get away from the visitors.
The Monarchs battled back manfully to secure the point though and team manager John Campbell was buoyed by the performance of the riders that were on show rather than what could have been ‘I think we came very close to taking something here with the boys we had, a bit more luck and we might well have done it. It was an excellent team performance much more like what we have been doing this year. A good night!’
The Monarchs were led from the front by captain and number 1 Sam Masters who put the disappointment of missing out on the next round of the World Championship qualifiers in Denmark on Saturday behind him to be top scorer on the night with 12 this including a 6 point tactical ride in heat 11 which tightened the scores and allowed the Monarchs back in. Masters being well backed up by Ricky Wells whose heat 15 win clinched the point for the Monarchs scoring 10 overall and young Aussie Josh Pickering seeing the Peterborough track for the first time and riding with 2 broken fingers and tendon damage in his left hand continued his excellent start to the season with 7. Special mention must also go to guest Danny Ayres, a battling and committed performance seeing him add 8 to the Monarchs tally and this must surely put him in the shop window for a Championship place.
All the Monarchs can be happy with their nights work though as they secured a point that not many predicted they would get strengthening their position at the top of the SGB Championship.
Team Manager: Carl Johnson
|1. Jack Holder||3||1||3||3||2||12||0|
|2. Simon Lambert||0||0||1*||2*||3||2|
|3. Paul Starke||3||2||3||3||X||11||0|
|4. Ulrich Ostergaard||2*||0||2*||3||7||2|
|5. Kenneth Hansen||3||3||0||0||6||0|
|6. Bradley Wilson-Dean||3||2*||2||2||9||1|
|7. Tom Bacon||F||0||0||0||0|
Team Manager: John Campbell
|1. Sam Masters||1*||3||6||1*||1||12||2|
|2. Josh Pickering||2||1||3||1||7||0|
|3. Ben Morley||0||0||1*||1||1|
|4. Max Clegg||1||1||1||1*||4||1|
|5. Ricky Wells||1*||3||1||2||3||10||1|
|6. Danny Ayres||2||2*||0||0||2||2||8||1|
|7. Mitchell Davey||1||2||0||3||0|
The Parsons Peebles Monarchs take the long trek to Peterborough to face the T Balfe Construction Panthers in SGB Championship looking to build on their 2 point lead at the top of the table.
Of course this task will be made all the harder due to the makeshift nature of the Monarchs line-up. The Riss brothers unfortunately both miss out due to varying commitments. Erik will be riding in Germany and with no agreement in place with the German federation to account for this a National League guest is all that is allowed with Ben Morley stepping in. I won’t go into a lecture here on how the main people that suffer from this are the fans and the reasoning that no facility is allowed as would be for a Dane or Swede due to their not being a reciprocal agreement is nonsense with a grand total of 1 British rider racing in the German league (and that is Robert Lambert who races on a German license) but it is what it is and we thank Ben for taking the booking.
Mark is also missing this time due to his GP qualifier in Slovenia yesterday. As Mark would not have been able to make it back to Peterborough in time for the meeting this supersedes his German commitments (Mark will take place in the same meeting as Erik today) and a guest facility is allowed. Leicester and Cradley man Danny Ayres steps in. Danny is in scintillating form this season having recovered from off season shoulder surgery and we all know that 100% commitment is the minimum we will get from the ex-Tiger.
Couple the missing Riss boys with the fact that Josh is riding on through his hand injury and was in some discomfort on Friday despite manfully battling to points in all his races and that Sam is still feeling the effects of a shoulder injury that was added to with a hand knock after his heat 1 crash on Friday and is a battered and bruised Monarchs that head south.
Of course it is when our backs are against the walls that the Parsons Peebles Monarchs come out firing and we are not heading into the match with a defeatist attitude and we will still be hoping that come the end of 15 heats tonight we will still be coming home with something in the bag.
The Panthers are at full strength and have been in good form at home so far this season winning all matches at Championship level. They have however been held close on all occasions as well and that is something the Monarchs will be looking to continue.
The East of England Showground men are built on strength in depth with a solid top 5 all capable of winning races and a strong reserve in Bradley Wilson-Dean. Wilson-Dean has been the main man so far recording double figures in each of the last two Panthers home matches and we will need Ayres and Mitchell to be at their best should we be looking to lower his colours.
Paul Starke and Ulrich Ostergaard also provide a strong looking middle pairing and they will be looking to take full advantage of the absence of Erik and pull in big points. Heat leader pairing Jack Holder and Kenneth Hansen are also more than capable of giving Sam and Ricky problems but it is our big two we will look to lead from the front if we are to secure anything.
A tough fixture ahead but one we will all be watching on at what is an exciting track on a sunny Sunday evening what more could you ask for?
Peterborough T Balfe Construction Panthers: Jack Hlder, Simon Lambert, Paul Starke, Ulrich Ostergaard, Kenneth Hansen, Bradley Wilson-Dean, Tom Bacon
Edinburgh Parsons Peebles Monarchs: Sam Masters, Josh Pickwering, Ben Morley, Max Clegg, Ricky Wells, Danny Ayres, Mitchell Davey