REPORT Friday 2nd October 2020, 10:03pm
What the Fork Monarch William Lawson made it 3 home winners in 4 runnings as he rolled through the card to lift the Caledonian Riders Championship trophy on an enjoyable evening at Armadale.
Lawson was probably down as the man to beat going into the event and he lived up to this billing as he raced to 6 wins out of 6 with some electric gating and clever inside lines to take the trophy.
The former world under 21 finalist was sharp all night as he led from the tapes in all bar his first ride when he had to hit the inside of bend 4 to come under George Rothery.
After that Lawson was dominant particularly from the outside gate he chose for the semi and final and after collecting his trophy Lawson was quick to enthuse "I had a good night, I enjoyed that. I was a little nervous at the start as I'd only had one practice since last year. It's been disappointing not to ride this year but I knew it was going to happen so you have to go with it. I'm happy with tonight though, I now have two good bikes and I'm ready for next year.
"My first race I was stiff as a brick and rusty but I got better every race untill the semi and final where my arms got tired so I had to roll off a little. I was happy with how I was riding, gate 4 was the place to be there was some grip on that.
"It was good to beat a few guys I'll be racing against next year and now I'll keep working on the fitness and maybe get on the beach for a practice. I'll get the trophy on the mantle for a bit although apparently I then have to give it back so I'll give it a wee polish and that'll be that."
Before the meeting the main opposition to Lawson was expected to come from Berwick pair Kyle Bickley and Leon Flint and this proved to be the case as they rounded out the podium. Both were only beaten by Lawson and each other and on a track neither would claim to love or have had much success on in the past this will be marked down as good practice. The pair probably shared the liveliest of the races on the evening with each other also particularly in heat 10 where Flint dived under his Bandits team mate and in the final where he could not repeat the feat Bickley clocking his every move.
Elsewhere Elliot Kelly will be happy with his nights work reaching the final, Greg Blair after overcoming machine gremlins will be pleased with 5 from his last 2 rides and there was solid outings for the Millar brothers, Danny Smith and Mason Watson.
The unluckiest rider of the night was undoubtedly Rothery particularly in his first 2 rides where he rode two fantastic 1st and 2nd bends to first blast round Lawson then secondly cut under Flint. Unfortunately for the Armadale Devil he was then perhaps guilty of trying a little to hard as he slipped off in each of his final 3 rides.
All in all the evening was a definitely a worthwhile exercise with What the Fork Monarchs co-promoter John Campbell saying "A lot of effort was put into this and it was nice that it all went well on the night, so to say it was a worthwhile exercise.... I would say that's right. It would have been disappointing if Willie didn't win it but he did his job well.
"The main aim for this evening was to get guys on the track but it also allowed us to get the streaming back up and running and it all worked well so that was pleasing. That's it for 2020 and hopefully we will all be back in March and we have done our work to make the stadium COVID ready so we will be ready for fans when the time comes we are allowed."
As mentioned that is the last of the track action for 2020 but this match can still be viewed on demand by purchasing the stream from the EMTV section of this website.