Plymouth Gladiators
Edinburgh Monarchs
Tuesday 1st August 2023
The Coliseum

A long night at Armadale ended in victories for both the Stellar Monarchs and the Stellar Monarchs Academy, both matches full of incident, some misfortune and some great performances also.

Team boss Alex Harkess realised that a weakened team needed some excellent performances, and we got them. He said "The heat leaders were just fantastic and I'm particularly pleased for Kye Thomson with his first ever maximum, a full 15. Both Kye and Craig Cook (also a full maximum) earned a rest from heat 15 and it was very nice to go in to that final race with no pressure on".

The top three totalled a brilliant 39 points including 12 race wins and laid the foundation for victory.

Neither Bastian Borke nor Adam Roynon scored as many as they would have been hoping for, but they did pick up some important points, none more so than Adam Roynon's heat 8 race win with Monarchs just two ahead.

Berwick undoubtedly suffered some bad luck during the match, and lost Thomas Jorgensen in a spectacular heat 3 fall. He lost control on the third corner and somersaulted over the bars and into the air fence. He was unable to continue and Injury rider replacement was triggered.

They would also point to some engine trouble for Leon Flint and of course the non-arrival (till it was too late) of Jonas Knudsen. However on the plus side for the Bandits, their guests Steve Boxall and James Pearson were both excellent with 15 and 4 bonus between them.

Top Bandit was Richie Worrall with 13 points but unusually for him, just the one race win against Josh Pickering in heat 10. He was in front on three other occasions but each of Craig Cook, Kye Thomson and (in the final heat) Josh Pickering took him from the back with excellent overtakes on a night with plenty of highlights.

Berwick had taken the lead with an ominously easy 5-1 in heat 2, but that turned out to be their only race advantage, and one of only two race wins.

With their heat leaders winning so many races, and Adam Roynon also grabbing one, Monarchs were able to edge ahead with 4-2s every time their other rider took a third place. They totalled six 4-2 wins and had the match won before the final heat. They also took the aggregate point having won at Berwick last Saturday.

Best wishes for a speedy recovery to Thomas Jorgensen, always a pleasure to watch.