Last Years Podium Image Credit: Ron MacNeill

An Open Open

PREVIEW Friday 11th May 2018, 11:00am

by Graham Muncie

It’s a Friday night off from team action for the Staggs Bar Monarchs this week but that is not to say there is not a feast of speedway ahead as Armadale hosts the always popular Harrisons Scottish Open.

As always an exciting and eclectic field has been put together with it being almost impossible to pick a pre meeting winner (although I’m sure all reading this will have a favourite).

In saying that there are some names that stand out as obvious contenders including the returning Sam Masters, 3 time winner Rory Schlein, the always immaculate Richie Worrall and of course the home heat leaders of Ricky Wells and Erik Riss. With dark horses galore in the likes of our very own Josh Pickering and Mark Riss alongside the likes of Ben Barker, Kevin Doolan and Paul Starke this means every heat is sure to be competitive.

‘The Open’ has many a time seen the introduction of foreign stars to this shore with the likes of Nicolai Klindt, Patrick Hougaard and Freddie Lindgren being in the line-up long before they were household names. This year is no different as we welcome German Marius Hilebrand and Dane Tobias Thomsen into the fold.

Thomsen is probably the more advanced of the two and has seen Armadale before doing a second half towards the end of last season. Berwick fans may also remember the name as he appeared in their stars of tomorrow meeting in 2016 coming 4th in the final.

Hilebrand hails from the same region of Germany as our very own Riss brothers and at only 18 this will be his first step onto foreign shores to race and it will be interesting to see how he competes.

Slightly more experienced on these shores but making his Armadale debut is Redcar’s Jordan Stewart. Stewart has made a promising start to his UK career and will be looking to take a few scalps to build confidence in this field.

Filling out the line-up and looking to mix it up alongside continuing their Armadale educations will be the remaining 2018 Monarchs Joel Andersson, Max Ruml and Matt Williamson and all will be looking to build on flashes of promise they have shown so far in a less pressurised environment.

So another interesting line-up with any one of many capable of being atop the podium after 22 heats of action, who will come out on top? There’s only one way to find out and that’s to get yourself to Armadale to enjoy the action.

See You There!