REPORT Sunday 27th June 2021, 5:45pm
The What the Fork Monarchs fell to their first defeat this season at the Eddie Wright Raceway on Sunday afternoon although it is hard to be upset given the standard of racing that was on show.
Heat after heat of scintillating action culminated in a heat 15 where you could have thrown the proverbial blanket over all 4 riders albeit from a Monarchs viewpoint the outcome of these battles too often fell in favour of the home men.
The visitors started well with an opening heat 4-2 before falling 6 behind after 5 races. Sam Masters was brought in immediately as a tactical substitute but after he and Richie Worrall made the gate, Sam hit a bit of grip and came down. While Worrall won the re-run the deficit was not reduced and with no more tactical options available it was an uphill battle from then on in.
Monarchs team manager John Campbell said after, "Sam (Masters) had what will be his worst match of the season. If you add the 8 or 9 more points he would normally score on then it would have been a lot closer. We always find Scunthorpe a difficult track to come to and people are right in saying it is difficult to be a visitor here.
"It's a shame Sam came down while on his tactical, that ruined our chance of at least a point and from there I'm not sure we were even scrambling to try and get that point, just to try and keep the deficit down.
"I'm sure this is just a blip for us though, I wasn't sure how we would go today so there we go."
After the failed tactical ride the Monarchs did reduce the deficit in the next race with Josh Pickering, who was involved in so many of the best races on the day as he so often is, cutting under home guest Ulrich Ostergaard to take the win. Kye Thomson picked up 3rd after home reserve Josh MacDonald had crashed out in a big looking incident.
Thankfully MacDonald seemed relatively unscathed, albeit had to sit out for the rest of the match. The Aussie's absence was not felt in any way by the Scorpions as fellow reserve Jordan Palin was undoubtedly the star of the show. A 16 point hail for the 17 year old with ride after ride belittling his lack of experience.
While the match was gone from a Monarchs point of view by the midway point, there was still plenty to enjoy as almost every race produced multiple passes on a track where no distance of a lead was safe.
The visiting fans did at least get something to cheer about in the final race when after a four lap battle between all 4 riders, Pickering stole the win on the line.
As it was though, this could not deny the home men their deserved spoils and it is now a couple of weeks break for the Monarchs to regroup before home and away matches against the Berwick Bandits.