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Mildenhall Fen Tigers v Edinburgh Monarchs

REPORT Sunday 29th July 2007, 10:00pm

by Mike Hunter

We expected an improved performance at Mildenhall, and we got it - not enough to take the win, but we did take the aggregate point.

Early on it was close enough for us to entertain thoughts of an even better result.

George Stancl started with a good win in heat 1, but Derek found himself pushed to the rear. We did take the lead in heat 2 though as Matthew led all the way, and Aaron turned in an excellent ride. He was right on the tail of second-placed Suchanek.

Kaj Laukkanen led all the way in heat 3 to keep us in front, and you can see why we were feeling optimistic! The track was quite tricky with several riders lifting, but at least we were making good starts and showing determination.

Over the next three heats we slipped behind, losing two 4-2's and a 5-1. Heat 6 was disappointing as Matthew was unsettled by lifting and dropped right to the back.

However Kaj steadied the boat by heading Jason King in heat 7, with Tully third, and we shared heat 8 won by Matthew. Derek was not having a good day though, over-trying on the rough circuit and getting into difficulties.

Legault beat Wethers in heat 10 but Laukkanen made it three out of three by winning heat 10. The score now was 33-27.

Heat 11 looked good for a bit but Jason King was the eventual winner, and this was the third ride for inexperienced home reserve Daniel Halsey.

Heat 12 was another fine ride from Laukkanen, though not a win. He was in third place early on but passed Suchanek, and moved up inside Legault. It looked as though he might pass him too but he was eventually held back.

George led heat 13 for much of the race, but eventually lifted and lost the lead to King. Kalle Katajisto had his best ride and was challenging on the outside of Madsen on lap four when he fell against the fence.

We were now 10 down and needed a little bit of effort to secure the bonus. Call on Matthew.

He took a TR ride and although Suchanek won the heat, Matthew and Andrew took a 5-3 and the aggregate point was ours.

It looked as though we would share heat 15 behind Legault but George lost third to Suchanek coming off the last turn.