Action from last Saturday Image Credit: Ron MacNeill


NEWS Wednesday 25th September 2013, 4:38pm

by Mike Hunter

  Edinburgh Monarchs

The Scotwaste Monarchs made a decent start to the Premier Playoffs by gaining a point at Workington, and must now capitalise by taking three points, ie winning by more than 6, when the Comets come to Armadale for the return on Friday.

Monarchs make a switch in their team lineup, swapping Claus Vissing and Theo Pijper, which should take the pressure off Claus a bit as he tries to find the form which has eluded him in recent weeks. Ipswich and Workington meet in Suffolk on Thursday with the return on Saturday so the Comets will be busy, and we will see how the group table looks prior to matches against Ipswich next week.


SCOTWASTE MONARCHS: Craig Cook, Derek Sneddon (capt), Claus Vissing, Jozsef Tabaka, Theo Pijper, Liam Carr, Max Fricke.

WORKINGTON COMETS: Richard Lawson, Rusty Harrison, Kyle Howarth, rider replacement for Tero Aarnio, Rene Bach, Ashley Morris, Chris Mills.

THE PREMIER PLAYOFFS: These are raced in two groups of three with the group winners racing a two-leg final to decide the League Champions for 2013.

The Playoff groups are:

Edinburgh, Ipswich, Workington

Somerset, Newcastle, Redcar

The remaining fixtures in our section are:

26th September: Ipswich v Workington

27th September: Edinburgh v Workington

28th September: Workington v Ipswich

3rd October: Ipswich v Edinburgh

4th October: Edinburgh v Ipswich

The other section are taking a while to get their matches organised, although Redcar v Newcastle takes place on Thursday. It will be well into October before either Somerset or Newcastle stage their home matches in that section.

At the moment we are likely to be racing Glasgow in the second leg of the Scottish Cup on October 11th, and if we make it the Premier Playoff Final will be after that.

VANDALISM: Regrettably Armadale Stadium has been the target of vandals again, and very young ones at that. The culprits are now known to the police.

The club’s Hospitality area was targetted and the result was quite a mess.

In true speedway style, a group of volunteers gathered at the stadium on Tuesday and worked hard to clear the place up. We thank them for their great efforts. After further work on Wednesday the Hospitality units should be available for Friday’s guests, who are the Aramadallies group of local enthusiasts.

That seems particularly appropriate this week as we are proud to be part of the local community in West Lothian and provide entertainment that we can all enjoy. Anti-social behaviour of the kind we have suffered will not put us off.

COMETS HAVE DONE WELL: It has been a good season for Workington under a new promotion, with a similar away record to Monarchs – 4 wins and 2 draws.

This they have achieved in spite of losing Mason Campton at the start of the season due to visa problems. The Aussie had been expected to have a very good season. Monarchs suffered similarly by not being able to use their signing Sam Masters.

Comets’ man four riders have been their mainstays – England’s Richard Lawson and Kyle Howarth, Dane Rene Bach and Aussie Rusty Harrison. Their Finnish rider Tero Aarnio will be missing for the remainder of the season, though he is not an Armadale specialist in any case.

Howarth is a former Monarch who has really made progress this season, excelling in the Elite League and also in the World Under-21 championship. They have another former Monarch at reserve in Ashley Morris, who has an important part to play with rider replacement applying for Aarnio.

LAST MEETING: The Scotwaste Monarchs defeated Somerset 48-42 in the second leg of the Knockout Cup semi-final on Friday 20th. This was not enough to win on aggregate. Jozsef Tabaka top scored with 13 points.

NEXT MEETING: On Friday 4th October the Scotwaste Monarchs race their final match in the Premier Playoffs, home to Ipswich.