Team Manager: Alex Harkess
|1. Ricky Wells||3||3||3||2*||2||13||1|
|2. Victor Palovaara||1||0||3||1||5||0|
|3. Mark Riss||0||2||3||2||7||0|
|4. Josh Pickering||2||0||0||2||4||0|
|5. Erik Riss||3||3||3||3||0||12||0|
|6. Max Ruml||2*||0||0||2||1|
|7. Joel Andersson||3||1||2*||1||1*||8||2|
Team Manager: Ritchie Hawkins
|1. Rory Schlein||0||3||2||1||1||7||0|
|2. Cameron Heeps R/R||0||0|
|3. Nico Covatti||3||1||2||1||3||3||13||0|
|4. Matthew Wethers||2||1||1*||2||3||9||1|
|5. Richie Worrall||2||1*||2||0||5||1|
|6. Connor Mountain||1||2||0||1*||0||1||5||1|
|7. David Wallinger||0||R||0||0||0|
Following their resounding away win at Redcar on Thursday, the Staggs Bar Monarchs did not slip up tonight against Ipswich and defeated the Witches 51-39 in an entertaining and hard fought encounter.
Team manager Alex Harkess said "It was an entertaining meeting but I didn't think we were that good. The lower part of our team, you just didn't know what you were going to get from them in any race.
"The Witches had strong guests and they were able to push us quite hard. Heat 8 was a turning point, that could have gone either way but our two Swedes got a 5-1 and that steadied us."
Ricky Wells and Erik Riss were both unbeaten until heat 15, when the exciting Covatti headed them home, and so again they gave the Monarchs the foundation they needed. Both had excellent wins from the back, Wells in heat 1 when he came right from the rear to catch Matthew Wethers, and Riss in a thrilling heat 11 when he overhauled Rory Schlein.
Erik made a last gasp effort to try to catch Covatti in heat 15 and lost control on the final turn. He did well to stay on his machine.
Everyone else had their moments. The reserves took a heat 2 5-1, and Joel Andersson teamed up with his fellow Swede Victor Palovaara for a 5-1 in heat 8 against the flying Covatti. This was probably the key heat of the night as it doubled Monarchs' advantage at that stage in a heat which looked as though it might have favoured the visitors.
After a poor first ride Mark Riss looked much more like his old self with 7 points including an important win in heat 9.
Josh Pickering probably would be the least happy home rider with just two second places and two lasts, well below his recent standards.. His extravagant attempts to overtake sometimes took him just too wide into uncharted territory.
For the Witches, they deployed their riders well. Covatti was very quick when in front and has such an exciting style, and Matthew Wethers was as crafty as ever piling up paid 10. His race with Max Ruml in heat 7 was a highlight with the American just losing a tough contest.
Rory Schlein didn't score as many as he usually does but he always seemed a threat, while Connor Mountain was a handy reserve and their other guest Richie Worrall was in the thick of things too.
The Witches certainly have some patching up to do for the remainder of the season, and we wish them well with that, while we now take a two-week break for the Somerset / Cardiff weekend.
The Staggs Bar Monarchs will look to build on their remarkable result at Redcar on Thursday night as we host the Ipswich Witches in Championship action.
The Witches were tipped by many at the start of the season to be table toppers but a myriad of injuries and underperformance has led to a disappointing season so far and the Witches know they need to turn this around if they want to make the playoffs.
These countless injuries continue this week as the Witches head to Armadale with only 3 of their own team in place. Danny King, Cameron Heeps, Jonas Jeppesen and Danyon Hume miss out through an assortment of ailments (although recent signing Jeppesen was due to miss out due to Danish commitments anyway)
As is often the case it could be argued that some of the replacements lined up actually strengthen the visitors with Richie Worrall and Matty Wethers having far more impressive Armadale pedigree than those they replace. Hume's average makes him difficult to cover for and David Wallinger steps in while rider replacement will operate for concussion victim Heeps allowing extra rides for all bar Rory Schlein.
For the home men we will go looking to show that our roaring 57-33 victory at Redcar was no fluke and with home matches in hand on all the teams in the division bar Workington it is time to get back into the playoff reckoning.
The full 1-7 will line-up as normal with the hope that we can carry on our recent improved performances.
This will be no easy feat though especially with Rory Schlein spearheading the Witches challenge. A home win is a must though with a shortened league programme meaning a home defeat could spell the death knell of any playoff chances.
Will the boys keep the run going? There's only one place to be to find out and that's at Armadale
See you there!
Friday 13th July 2018, 9:10pm
The Staggs Bar Monarchs carried on thier good form with a 51-39 victory over a competitive Ipswich this evening. Top scorer for the Moanrchs was Ricky Wells with 13+1 while the visitors were led by Nico Covatti with 13 also
Wednesday 11th July 2018, 12:00pm
League action resumes this week for the Stagg's Bar Monarchs and in spite of their success in the Cup (and to an extent because of it) they find themselves at the foot of the Championship table. So matches at Redcar (Thursday) and Armadale (Friday v Ipswich) are a valuable source of points as we try to climb the table.