The Parsons Peebles Monarchs made a horrific start that they could not recover from going down 52-41 in an entertaining match at Redcar on Thursday evening.
A large band of Monarchs fans had made the trip and watched on in horror as the Bears romped out to a 15-3 start that ultimately proved too much of a hurdle for the Armadale men.
The first two races were very much over by the 2nd bend although Max Clegg should have done better in heat 2 after making the gate in front only to shut off inexplicably allowing all his opponents past him without so much as an ounce of fight.
In heat 3 Ricky Wells made the start and looked ready to stop the rot only to hit a hole going into the first bend coming down. This was to be the only blot on Wells copy book all night as he then raced to 4 heat wins in his remaining heats and the Monarchs captain on the night was happy with his own performance if a little frustrated in the score line after the match saying “It was a bad start for myself and the boys, I hit a hole and got excluded, I haven’t done that in a while but I was happy with 4 straight wins after that. It’s a tough place to come as there are plenty of lines, it is a great race track but it can be a tough place to come, the Bears have some hard chargers and (Jason) Garrity and (Ben) Barker always put you under pressure. I’m a little disappointed in the result as I thought we could have come here and got something but I thought we did ok after losing 3 5-1’s to start the match. We just need to move on bounce back and everyone needs to start scoring points.”
The visitor’s side of the pits must have been shell-shocked after this start but started a mini fight back at this point. Erik Riss rocketed from the tapes in heat 4 and partner Mitchell Davey rode one of his best heats since returning to this level having an enthralling battle with Danny Ayres, passing and re-passing at least 3 times before Davey made a tremendous inside swoop off bend 4 in the last lap to take a well earned point.
Better was to come in the next race as guest Ty Proctor and Mark Riss made the jump to take a 5-1 and the gap was only 6 points.
Unfortunately the engine demons that hampered Erik at Sheffield on Sunday were to return in heat 6 when he ground to a halt while leading and the resultant 5-1 put the Bears in a possession of strength they would not relinquish.
Wells donned the black and white helmet for a tactical ride in heat 7 and duly delivered and with Josh Pickering battling to an excellent third the gap had been closed once again.
This was not to be the catalyst the Monarchs required though as despite having the majority of the heat winners the rest of the way this was coupled with too many last places meaning no leeway could be made and on the odd occasion a home man did take the chequered flag a heat advantage normally ensued.
That is not to say there were not some excellent racing for the fans to enjoy with battles between Pickering, Erik Riss and all of the home men the highlights of an exciting night of racing.
Any hopes the Monarchs had of securing so much as the consolation point were dashed in heat 14 with Josh Pickering forced to sit out after a nasty looking crash in heat 10 was replaced by Clegg and the home fans could breath easy as Jonas Andersen and Tobias Busch who were both very impressive on the night raced to a heat maximum securing the spoils for the home men.
The fans were treated to another excellent race to finish the evening with Erik Riss, Andersen and Barker tussling behind Wells but alas it was all in vain as the match was lost and the Monarchs need to make sure no further slip ups are to ensue if they are to secure an end of season playoff berth.
Team Manager: Jittendra Duffill
|1. Ben Barker||3||3||2||3||0||11||0|
|2. Ellis Perks||2*||2*||2||1*||7||3|
|3. Jason Garrity||3||1||1||2||7||0|
|4. Jonas B Andersen||2*||0||3||2||7||1|
|5. Charles Wright||2||2||2||1||7||0|
|6. Tobias Busch||3||0||1*||1*||2*||7||3|
|7. Danny Ayres||2*||0||1*||3||2|
Team Manager: John Campbell
|1. Ty Proctor||1||3||3||X||7||0|
|2. Mark Riss||0||2*||3||X||5||1|
|3. Ricky Wells||X||6||3||3||3||15||0|
|4. Josh Pickering||1||1||X||2||0|
|5. Erik Riss||3||E||2||2||1||8||0|
|6. Max Clegg||0||1||0||0||1||0|
|7. Mitchell Davey||1||1||0||0||1||3||0|
It's a short trip down the A1 to Teesside tonight as the Parsons Peebles Monarchs take on the Redcar Bears in Championship action.
With the playoffs fast approaching this has the potential to be a huge match in how the final standings end up.
The two clubs currently sit 4th and 5th respectively and with only the top 4 having the chance to lift the trophy at the end of the season this match takes on even more importance.
The Parson Peebles Monarch currently sit 5 points ahead of the Bears and if they were to head north with the spoils tonight it could be the final nail in the coffin for the Bears hopes. Of course if the opposite rings true this would give the Bears a big boost and close the gap even further going into the remaining matches.
Redcar have an inconsistent home record so far this season with excellent victories like that recorded against Glasgow last Thursday when undermanned being matched by 4 home defeats and a home draw.
The Monarchs have already visited Teesside this year and put in a tepid display being defeated 52-40. On that night we didn't have the back up to Sam and Erik to properly challenge and with Sam missing this time the rest of the boys know they will need to step up.
Ty Proctor once again deputises for our injured captain and as a former Bear we will be hopeful of a repeat of his previous visit where he recorded 3 race wins on the way to an 11 point haul.
Another change to the Monarchs racing order sees Josh and Max flip positions with the new average dictating a spell at reserve for Clegg. A drop to reserve acted as a lightning rod for Max earlier in the season and a repeat of that would give a nice balance to the side as Josh appears to progress week on week so a return to the top 5 shouldn't faze the Aussie.
Mark appears to have returned from injury with no real issue having recorded paid 16 over two meetings for Wolves as they mailed Kings Lynn in a double header in Norfolk last night so all in all we appear set to do battle.
The Bears are at full strength with injury problems for Jason Garrity and Tobias Busch appearing to have subsided. They will be led by a resurgent Ben Barker who has rolled back the years this season increasing his average to over 8.5.
Barker is always well backed up by Garrity, Charles Wright and Jonas B Andersen and with the powerful reserve pairing of Busch and Danny Ayres it is no surprise they are up their challenging for the playoffs as well.
As mentioned previously this is a huge match for both sides and whoever comes out on top will have a great boost as they go in hunt of that vital 4th place.
Wednesday 23rd August 2017, 2:32pm
After a dry run of weather to start the season the last few weeks have not been as kind and everyone will be hoping for a reappearance of the sun as the re-staging o f the Caledonian Riders Championship takes place at Armadale this Friday.