Michal beats David Howe, heat 11 Image Credit: Ron MacNeill


NEWS Friday 22nd May 2009, 0:41am

by Mike Hunter

It was by no means easy, but Monarchs finished 11 points clear of Scunthorpe to take all three points from their first Premier League match of the season.

A magnificent performance by ex-Monarch Magnus Karlsson was the main obstacle. He won his first four heats, including a TR, but came to grief in the final race while battling for the lead with Andrew Tully.

Scunthorpe were stil in with a chance of taking a point from the match, needing a 5-1 to cut Monarchs' lead to 6. Ryan Fisher had seemed the most likely to split the Karlsson / Howe pairing but he came down at the first corner after collecting Magnus's front wheel.

However Andrew Tully flew at Karlsson and gave him a terrific battle for the opening lap and a half. He entered the pits turn the quicker of the two, Karlsson moved a little wider to find extra drive - but went too far, lifted and fell.

Tully deservedly took the rerun for a final score of 51-40.

Monarchs were not at their best though as usual there were points throughout the side. Matthew Wethers was a casualty, lifting and crashing at the start of heat 9 and injuring his hand.

After a last place in heat 11 Matthew pulled out of the meeting.

David Howe won his first two heats and looked as though he was on a par with Karlsson, but faded in the latter stages.

Carl Wilkinson was the only other Scunthorpe rider to win a heat.