The Staggs Bar Monarchs went down 41-48 to Glasgow in their first home Championship Shield match tonight at Armadale. It was a night with plenty of talking points.
Disappointed home captain Erik Riss said “The track was difficult even for me and Ricky. The difference today was that Glasgow have experienced riders who know what to do with these conditions. We lost to a better team, yes, but it was a lot to do with experience. Me and Ricky tried to tell our guys what to do but they lacked the experience.
“A loss at home is a punch in the face but we are going to use it as motivation for Sunday.”
Everyone knew Glasgow were good, and had several Armadale specialists, so the result was perhaps not the biggest surprise. Our side with three men very inexperienced in Armadale terms, needed everyone performing at their best, and that didn’t turn out to be the case.
It was a rather chaotic night with too many falls and delays on a grippy track. A 2-hour match at Armadale is very much the exception although it is the norm at some other circuits. Both teams made errors and lost points, especially in the early stages.
The biggest successes on the home side were the sensational Erik Riss, plus Max Ruml who is clearly a gem of a prospect. Erik flew to victory in his first three rides before falling in heat 13 trying to overcome a slow start. In Max’s case, 6 points was an excellent return but he may have had more – a small mistake in heat 6 cost him what seemed a certain win over Chris Harris, and he was on a paid win in heat 10 before Claus Vissing came off and caused his partner to fall also. That worked in Glasgow’s favour as Starke grabbed second, ahead of Max, in the rerun.
We had done well enough to be sitting at 21-21 after 7 heats, the first four of which featured exclusions. Tigers took a heat 8 4-2 but it was heat 9 which cost us dear. Lively Mark Riss was leading the way from Harris but a fall by Joel Andersson and failure to clear the track quickly enough caused a stoppage just before Mark reached the end of lap two.
In the restart Mark was not away as well and spun off under the fence. So we finished up with one of these dismal two-man 0-5 results and everyone knew the writing was on the wall then.
Ricky Wells, Mark Riss and Josh Pickering, whilst all capable of better, at least picked up reasonable scores. It’s clearly early days to be over-critical but new boys Joel Andersson and Matt Williamson obviously need to be getting in amongst things round their home track fairly soon.
Performances on the Glasgow side were all what would probably have been expected of experienced riders, though the biggest hand has to go to Richie Worrall who was the main architect of victory for them with four race wins. He really does ride Armadale like a master.
Team Manager: Alex Harkess
|1. Ricky Wells||2||1*||3||2||1*||1*||10||3|
|2. Max Ruml||1*||2||2||1||6||1|
|3. Mark Riss||2||2||FD||2||6||0|
|4. Joel Andersson||1*||0||FD||1||1|
|5. Erik Riss||3||3||3||FD||2||11||0|
|6. Matt Williamson||1||F||F||1||0|
|7. Josh Pickering||3||FD||0||1*||2||6||1|
Team Manager: Cami Brown
|1. Richie Worrall||3||3||1*||3||3||13||1|
|2. Lewis Kerr||FD||1||3||2||6||0|
|3. Paul Starke||XD||1*||2||3||6||1|
|4. Claus Vissing||3||2||FD||3||0||8||0|
|5. Chris Harris||1*||3||3||1||8||1|
|6. Jack Thomas||FD||XO||0||0||0|
|7. James Sarjeant||2||2||1||2*||0||7||1|
Its take 2 as the Staggs Bar Monarchs look to get our home Championship Shield campaign up and running with a visit from our nearest and dearest the Glasgow Tigers to Armadale.
Tonight’s match will be absolutely pivotal in the group stages as both side look to build on decent opening weekends last week. Of Course the Monarchs secured an away point courtesy of only going down by 4 at Workington although there was a frustration in the camp this was not bettered as a few points were left on track. For the Tigers a resounding home victory over Berwick was followed up by a 4 point defeat at Shielfield on Saturday night and again with no disrespect to the Bandits the men form the west would probably have expected more than this.
In such a short group campaign (only 6 matches in total) every contest is vital with any home points dropped more than likely being a death knell to chances of progression this making this weekend’s fixtures all the more intriguing (The Monarchs head West on Sunday afternoon) and with a plethora of Armadale expertise in the visiting ranks a tough night is in prospect.
There are noted Armadale performers from top to bottom of the Tigers line-up with Richie Worrall and Chris Harris at the top end both knowing the quickest way around, a middle order of ex Monarch Claus Vissing alongside Paul Starke and Lewi Kerr all with double digit returns on their Armadale resume and James Sarjeant at the bottom a noted lover of our circuit as he mentioned himself on the excellent TapesUp on RockSport Radio last week (shameless plug).
The only real unknown is Jack Thomas when it comes to Armadale but we have seen how quickly he can adapt to circuits after his 7 point performance in the Scottish Cup at Ashfield a few weeks ago and on the back of a British under 21 semi final win on Wednesday he will come into the meeting sky high in confidence.
That is not to say we should go into this match as underdogs the 2018 Monarchs put on a great show in defeating a Champions select full of experience the other week and with the form shown so far by Ricky and Erik we do not need to worry about matching the Tigers at the top of the team, our reserves will look after themselves with both Josh and Matt looking for a big performance after perhaps scoring less than expected at Workington so that leaves the middle order of Max, Joel and Mark who will be under a little more pressure than accustomed to so far this season. All have acquitted themselves well with Joel and Max taking their first heat wins in Monarchs colours against the Champions side and Mark scoring solidly in all his meetings so far though so again we should have no worries in this regard.
So a cracking derby encounter awaits and we have a special guest appearance form the one thing that matters most for a speedway meeting…… the sun! Couple that with the celebrations of our teams from the 40’s and 50’s tonight and another enthralling encounter awaits.
There is only one place to see it and that is Armadale so get yourself along and cheer on the boys.
See you there!
Friday 20th April 2018, 9:19pm
The Staggs Bar Monarchs went down 41-48 to the Glasgow Tigers at Armadale this evening.
Wednesday 18th April 2018, 9:35pm
The Staggs Bar Monarchs hope to consolidate their position in the Championship Shield Border section on Friday – and the only way we can do that is by beating Glasgow Tigers at Armadale in our second match in the competition.
Wednesday 18th April 2018, 4:00pm
This Friday at Armadale Stadium the entertainment goes beyond the on-track Championship Shield action against the Glasgow Tigers as we also host the first in our series of Decades Night.