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Edinburgh Monarchs v Berwick Bandits

REPORT Friday 21st March 2008, 10:00pm

by Mike Hunter

The impression that we have a talented team who are likely to improve as the season goes on was strengthened during our 56-35 win over Berwick.

As in our opening meeting, some points were lost, but this wasn?t particularly important ? it might matter more next Friday if we can?t avoid the mistakes.

Berwick started the meeting with 7 riders but in a matter of minutes they were sadly down to 5.

Both visiting riders fell on the first bend of heat 1, the Italian Franchetti losing it and upsetting Rymel too. The young newcomer unfortunately suffered shoulder and back injuries and could be out for a while.

Having made a poor start the first time, Rymel jetted away in the rerun. Fisher was quickly on his tail but at the end of lap 2, trying a wide turn on the pits bend, he clipped the fence with his back wheel and came down.

He remounted for the point. Heat 2 was also shared, because for the second week running Andrew Tully fell while leading. Aaron Summers took on the responsibility though and won in a good time.

We finally did take the lead in heat 3 with William Lawson flying again, and Thomas Jonasson just holding third from Aarnio.

Manuel Hauzinger finally made his Berwick debut in heat 4, but something was up with him. He came out on a borrowed machine, dribbled a few yards and went on to the centre green. That was the last we saw of him.

Two riders down, the Bandits had to use their reserves 14 times between them, which inevitably led to unwanted delays on a night most agreed was Armadale?s coldest ever.

Wethers and Tully took a 5-1 over McKinna, then Lawson comprehensively beat heat 1 winner Rymel with Jonasson third again. 8 points up now, Monarchs were starting to get things right.

They didn?t get heat 6 right though. Magosi jetted from the tapes with Derek Sneddon battling to get to him. For three laps he tried and failed, losing ground, and it was only at that point that Fisher was able to come past to take up the chase.

He quickly reeled in the Hungarian and lost by a wheel. Had he been able to make his move earlier he would surely have taken the 3 points.

Heat 7 was an odd one. Aaron Summers went ahead at the second bend, joined by Matthew Wethers ahead of Makovsky. The Czech came back round Wethers who then slowed ? the reason being that he had seen some red lights, actually on the back of a van reversing at an untimely moment in the pits.

Matthew mentioned this to the ref whose answer was that as it was an Edinburgh van, we had to accept the situation!

Magosi was given a TR in heat 8, and he gated again. This time Tully was quickly into position, coming hard inside the Hungarian on the pits bend. He didn?t do much wrong, but Magosi came down and Andrew took the punishment.

Derek Sneddon won the rerun, and Adam McKinna misjudged the situation, passing Magosi and thereby knocking a point off Bandits? score!

(Subsequently, it seems they have lost a further point as the TR for a reserve replacement should not have been permitted).

The two visiting reserves were out again in heat 9, a 5-1 to Lawson and the improving Jonasson.

Fisher and Sneddon rode in combination for a 5-1 in heat 10 ahead of Makovsky, and the match was well and truly over. We just wanted it to speed up because it was absolutely freezing! However the reserves were out in each of the next four heats.

The impressive Rymel beat Wethers in heat 11 with Summers slipping inside McKinna for another good point.

Off the inside, Thomas Jonasson found it difficult to take the first corner and ran into Magosi in heat 12. He was quickly across to see that Norbert was OK, and was maybe fortunate to make the rerun.

This was a good win for Tully after a mixed evening, with Thomas back in third again. Andrew chased Makovsky throughout the race, won by a wheel and fell after the heat.

Thomas won?t be happy with his scoring so far but he?s learning.

Wethers and Fisher combined stylishly to head Rymel in heat 13, and then sadly William Lawson lost for the first time at Armadale this season ? due to a stoppage on the start line.

This allowed Bandits to take a 5-1 through McKinna and Aarnio, with Summers having his poorest ride.

Makovsky tried hard to give Fisher a tough time in heat 15 but the American gave as good as he got for a fine win. Makovsky did hold off Wethers and was riding Armadale better than he previously has.