Looking good in heat 3 Image Credit: Peter Hill

Monarchs Stung By Scorpions

REPORT Sunday 3rd July 2022, 7:04pm

by Graham Muncie

The What the Fork Monarchs started well before falling away ultimately leaving Scunthorpe pointless going down 51-39 at the Eddie Wright Raceway on Sunday afternoon.

The Scorpions are one of the teams tussling with the Armadale men for the final playoff spots and the Monarchs had headed for Lincolnshire looking for points.

This task was to be made all the harder though when it was discovered that captain and number 1 Sam Masters had suffered a foot injury in Poland on Saturday although he did duly win heat 1 this was about as far as his night would go as he had to pull up in his second ride and that was it for the Monarchs talisman.

This leaving team manager John Campbell to say "Sam probably shouldn't have ridden but he always wants to give it a go. He was in quite a bit of pain after his second ride.

"I'm not sure if we would have got a point with Sam fit as it's not a track our riders go well on. Josh was the exception to that of course and I was happy with how Lasse Fredriksen and Jacob Hook got stuck in. We needed a bit more from some of the others though."

As mentioned, the Monarchs made the better start to the meeting taking victory in 4 of the first 6 races with Masters heat 1 win being backed by Kye Thomson in heat 3 and Josh Pickering in heats 4 and 6 the former of these seeing Thomson backed up by teammate Paco Castagna for a 5-1 meaning the Monarchs had a 4 point lead.

This would be as good as it got though as the home men grew into the encounter especially after a lengthy track grade after heat 6.

The Scorpions took advantages in all of heats 7,8,9 and 10 meaning that 4 point Monarchs lead had been reversed into a 10-point deficit.

The bleeding was at least stopped over the next few races with Pickering the busiest of the Monarchs covering a ride for Masters alongside taking a tactical ride holding the fort, a 7 ride 18 point haul well deserved for his efforts.

From a Monarchs point of view though there was little backup as Thomson and Castagna got worse and worse as the match progressed leaving a spirited display from Lasse Fredriksen the only real back-up for Pickering.

This is to take nothing whatsoever away from the home men though who stuck to their task well, Ryan Douglas leading the way with 14 backed up well by Simon Lambert, James Wright and Zaine Kennedy who all hit double figures also.

So, no points gained for the Monarchs means there can be no further slip ups the rest of the way with the big concern now being the extent of Masters injury.

Scunthorpe 51: Douglas 14+3, Lambert 10+3, Anderson 6, Wright 11, Allen R/R, Coles 0, Kennedy 10+1

Edinburgh 39: Masters 3, Fredriksen 5, Thomson 4, Castagna 4+2, Pickering 18, Hook 2, Sarjeant 3+1