Team Manager: Jade Mudgway
|1. Ben Barker||1||2||3||3||2||2||13||0|
|2. Tobias Busch R/R||0||0|
|3. Dimitri Bergé||0||0||3||3||0|
|4. Jonas B Andersen||0||2||1||1*||F||4||1|
|5. Thomas Jorgensen||2||1||0||0||3||0|
|6. Mikkel B Andersen||2||1*||F||1||1||0||5||1|
|7. Jordan Stewart||0||0||3||2||0||0||5||0|
Team Manager: John Campbell
|1. Ricky Wells||2*||3||3||3||3||14||1|
|2. Victor Palovaara||3||2*||1*||2*||8||3|
|3. Mark Riss||1||0||1*||2||1|
|4. Josh Pickering||3||2||1*||3||9||1|
|5. Erik Riss||3||3||3||1||1||11||0|
|6. Max Ruml||1||0||0||1||0|
|7. Joel Andersson||3||1||2||2||2||2*||12||1|
Well here is a result that will make everyone sit up. As was pointed out we were bottom of the points table this morning, but as anyone could see this was almost entirely to do with having had just two home league meetings.
However our away record did show just the one point gained so far so that needed improving. At Redcar we did that in style with a 57-33 success on a sunny night in a meeting with some very good racing. The Bears' fans can't have been happy with the result but they do get entertained on that lovely track.
As for the visiting Monarchs it was seventh heaven as we took command of the match and led 22-8 after five heats. The middle part of the match was much closer and the home team had pulled two points back by heat 10 with assistance from tac sub Ben Barker, their first race winner in heat 7.
Then off we went again with two 5-1s and two 4-2s over the final third for that monster result. Incredible.
First to be mentioned has to be Ricky Wells who again sailed serenely along and never looked remotely like losing. He kept an eye out for his partners and enjoyed three 5-1s with Victor Palovaara who has done so much to transform the team. Victor gated well and rode with calm assurance, dropping points only in heat 8.
Erik Riss perhaps would not be entirely happy, knowing how self-critical he can be, because he gated in every ride but never looked really quick and was passed by Barker in heats 13 and 15.
As ever Josh Pickering was amazing. Sitting there on his 4.93 average he was passing for fun and thrilling the crowd. Even when he made the start in heat 10 he managed to mess up the first corner just so he could come from the back again. He did finally manage a tapes-to-flag win in heat 14.
Joel Andersson started with a superb ride coming from somewhere near the back to drive inside MB Andersen to win heat 2. With his studious style he was involved in further passing and re-passing heats on his way to an excellent 12+1 total.
The two boys struggling for form, Mark Riss and Max Ruml, still didn't consistently find what they were looking for. Max had a decent heat two after a good start but that was all really, while Mark managed a couple of thirds. Full marks to him for heat 12 when he chased round the fence all the way and grabbed third on the line.
Apart from Barker none of the Bears were consistent though the Andersen brothers were entertaining. They introduced new European Grasstrack Champion Dimitri Berge before the start and he then had two atrocious rides before finally winning heat 12. Hopefully the fans will continue to support because it is a great place to watch speedway.
It's another trip down the A1 for the Staggs Bar Monarchs as we head to Teesside to take on the Redcar Bars in Championship action.
With the shortened fixture list the Monarchs now find themselves more than halfway through their away fixtures (in fact after tonight that will be 2/3rd complete) and with only 1 away point to show for it so far then it is starting to become imperative that this is rectified.
While the league table is always false when there is such a difference in amount of home and away fixtures raced should we continue to struggle on the road then there will be no margin for error at Armadale with a lot of tough fixtures to come.
In saying that there is optimism that Redcar is the kind of arena where we are set up to do well. Most of our team can look to positive results their in the past and hopefully this is a barometer of things to come. At the top end Ricky and Erik should certainly have no fear of the place. Erik having raced to 5 unbeaten races in the recent Fours and Ricky having recorded 15 points in our last visit there.
Elsewhere Mark also has shown a liking for the Media Prime track and with Joel and Max having experience of the place there should be no surprises for them. Josh will be looking to keep up his impressive form since moving into the main body of the team and while you would expect that Victor would be no stranger to the track from his Newcastle days a quick look at the speedway updates site show he actually missed all 3 matches there in 2016.
For the home men as seems to be the case often it has been a season of flux with line-up changes being forced due to injury more often than would be liked. The team appeared to be settling down with Tobias Busch returning only for the former Monarch to suffer concussion meaning he misses out tonight and rider replacement operates allowing the Anderson brothers, Dimitri Berge and Jordan Stewart extra rides an allowance that potentially strengthens the Bears overall.
The rest of the team is as scheduled with the North east men looking for exciting duo Ben Barker and Thomas Jorgensen to lead the way, back up will come form combative elder Anderson Jonas and recent signing Berge and with a team built on a strength in depth manner the reserves look strong with Mikkel Anderson and Jordan Stewart both having had excellent matches so far this season not least at home to Glasgow for Stewart where he romped to a paid 17 score.
So another tough night looks in prospect but one in which it has to be said the Monarchs will travel south in search of points, it is starting to get to the stage of the season where these are a must if we are to maintain our proud record of playoff qualification year on year.
Can our boys do it? Keep an eye on the Monarchs website to find out.