Author Archives: Henry Chard

About Henry Chard

Digital Media Manager at Ipswich Speedway

RACEDAY PREVIEW: PREMIERSHIP PAIRS – ROUND 3

By Henry Chard

All the details ahead of the third round of the Premiership Pairs.

WHEN & WHERE

The ‘Tru Mix’ Witches pairing travels to King’s Lynn for the third round of the Premiership Pairs at the Adrian Flux Arena on Thursday 7th July which starts at 7.30pm.

TEAMS

WOLVES: Sam Masters, Steve Worrall, Leon Flint (RS). Team Manager: Peter Adams

BELLE VUE: Max Fricke, Matej Zagar, Tom Brennan (RS). Team Manager: Mark Lemon

IPSWICH: Jason Doyle, Danny King, Danyon Hume (RS). Team Manager: Ritchie Hawkins

KING’S LYNN: Josh Pickering, Richard Lawson, Jason Edwards (RS). Team Manager: Alex Brady

PETERBOROUGH: Chris Harris, Hans Andersen, Jordan Jenkins (RS). Team Manager: Rob Lyon

SHEFFIELD: Jack Holder, Adam Ellis, Connor Mountain (RS). Team Manager: Simon Stead

REFEREE: A. Steele

PREMIERSHIP PAIRS TABLE

TeamPoints
King’s Lynn16
Sheffield16
Ipswich14
Belle Vue12
Wolverhampton4
Peterborough2

TICKETS

Tickets are available on the gate. The meeting will also be streamed online here. A BSN+ subscription is required to watch. Each round can be purchased individually, priced at £12.99. BSN’s coverage starts at 7.00pm. BSN’s web URL is watch.britishspeedway.co.uk. BSN also has an App which is now available on Amazon Fire TV and on all IOS (Apple) devices.

THE STORY

The ‘Tru Mix’ Witches pairing heads to King’s Lynn on Thursday for the third round of the Premiership Pairs. King’s Lynn were victorious at Peterborough in the opening round of the new competition before Ipswich won their home round at Foxhall last time out to put themselves back in the mix in at the top of the standings. Just four points separate the top four teams with Wolverhampton and Peterborough needing a big night in Norfolk to get themselves back into contention.

Team manager Ritchie Hawkins has elected to field Jason Doyle and captain Danny King for this round with Danyon Hume as the ‘Rising Star’. Doyle has been phenomenal in the opening two rounds and scored a 15-point maximum on his last visit to the Adrian Flux Arena. Who he is partnered by is less of a clear decision at the moment but skipper King gets the nod for this round and he scored eight points in the Witches’ win at King’s Lynn last month. Danyon Hume continues as the ‘Rising Star’ and is guaranteed at least one ride as part of the regulations.

HOW IT WORKS

The competition is a new addition to the calendar for 2022 with all six Premiership clubs staging a round throughout the season. Each club will have two riders and a ‘Rising Star’ at each round with scores accumulated over all six rounds before the overall aggregate winner is declared after the final round of the competition at Belle Vue in September. 12 points will be awarded to each round winner, eight points to second, six points to third, four points to fourth, two points to fifth and no points to sixth.

There will be 15 qualifying heats of action at each round with the top scoring team from the qualifying heats going directly to the final. The teams placed in second and third will compete in a semi-final with the winning side from that race progressing to the final to decide the round winners. Each team has five qualifying heats each and the ‘Rising Star’ must take at least one ride during the meeting. The points scoring system for the competition in each race will be 4-3-2-0.

FROM THE BOSS

Ipswich ‘Tru Mix’ Witches team manager Ritchie Hawkins gives us his pre-match thoughts…

“We have gone back to Jason and Danny. Jason has been in superb form, so it is brilliant to have him. Since the last Pairs round Troy (Batchelor) has probably been in his worst bit of form of the season in the last few meetings whereas Danny has picked up form. That is why we have gone for this pairing.

“It will be another really tough meeting and a strong line-up. I know how good Danny is around King’s Lynn when he is on it and Jason has been superb everywhere. We go into it with confidence believing our pairing can be pushing to win another round.

“We need to build on our victory last time out and have another good round and that will see us in a good position for the second half of the competition.”

THE LINE-UP

It will be another strong line-up at the Adrian Flux Arena and by the end of the evening we will have reached the halfway point in the competition. The hosts and current joint leaders remain unchanged with captain Josh Pickering and Richard Lawson looking to deliver success in front of their home supporters. Joint leaders Sheffield bring Grand Prix rider Jack Holder into their pairing alongside British champion Adam Ellis. There will be another Grand Prix star in action with the Aces bringing Max Fricke back into their duo as he partners Matej Zagar. It was due to be an all-Australian duo for Wolverhampton as they declared Sam Masters and Nick Morris for this round but Steve Worrall will now partner Masters. Peterborough stick with Chris Harris and Hans Andersen with both themselves and Wolverhampton needing a good round to avoid being cut adrift at the bottom.

AWAY DAYS

An adult ticket costs £20, concessions (over 65) and students £18 and children (ages 12-17) £5. Official programmes cost £3. Facilities include free floodlit parking, seated grandstand, covered standing grandstand, restaurant, fully stocked bar and function room, four licenced bar outlets, merchandise stands, toilets and a first aid room. For travel information head here.

For more information about the club head to King’s Lynn’s official website.

RACEDAY REPORT: WOLVERHAMPTON 43–47 IPSWICH – PREMIERSHIP (A)

By Henry Chard

THE SCORES

WOLVES 43: Sam Masters © 12+2, Steve Worrall 8+1, Luke Becker 12, Ryan Douglas 2+1, Nick Morris 6, Drew Kemp 2, Leon Flint (RS) 1. Team Manager: Peter Adams

IPSWICH 47: Jason Doyle 11, Ben Barker 3+1, Troy Batchelor 7+3, Paul Starke R/R, Danny King © 7+2, Erik Riss 16+1, Danyon Hume (RS) 3. Team Manager: Ritchie Hawkins

REFEREE: P. Carrington

PREMIERSHIP TABLE

TeamMeetingsPoints
Ipswich1122
Belle Vue1020
Sheffield920
Wolverhampton1018
Peterborough1010
King’s Lynn89

THE STORY

The ‘Tru Mix’ Witches recorded another impressive victory on the road as they won at Wolverhampton for the second time this season on Monday night in the Premiership.

Ipswich were handed a blow on the day of the meeting with Paul Starke ruled out of the meeting with thumb ligament damage following his crash at Sheffield last week with rider replacement in operation at number four in his absence. However, despite that the Witches started brightly and led by six after four heats. Wolverhampton pulled it back and the scores were level after 10 heats of action before Ipswich finished strongly to secure victory with a race to spare which took them back to the top of the Premiership. Erik Riss top scored with 16+1.

Sam Masters was an injury doubt ahead of the meeting, but he fought through the pain to win heat one as the points were shared. Riss was victorious in heat two ahead of Drew Kemp with Danyon Hume picking up a point to edge the visitors ahead. Luke Becker worked his way through the traffic to take the chequered flag in heat three with the Witches having initially made the gate meaning a 3-3. Team manager Ritchie Hawkins made a reserve switch in heat four putting Riss in for Hume, and it worked a treat as he raced to victory and was joined by skipper Danny King for a 1-5 that put Ipswich six points to the good after a terrific start to the meeting.

Jason Doyle won a shared heat five before the home duo of Steve Worrall and Masters recorded Wolves’ first maximum of the evening in heat six to reduce the Suffolk side’s lead to just two points. Nick Morris won heat seven in a 3-3 and the scores were level shortly after as Worrall won heat eight ahead of Hume and Leon Flint took advantage of a slip by Ben Barker to nip into third for a heat advantage to make it 24-24.

However, Ipswich regained the lead in heat nine as Riss won and Ryan Douglas fell whilst chasing hard in second place, allowing King into second for a 1-5 to the away side. It was all level again after heat 10 as Masters and Worrall raced to another 5-1. Morris was the victim of first bend bunching at the start of heat 11 and hit the deck, with all four riders called back for the re-run. Doyle got the better of Morris in the second staging with the Wolves rider just hanging onto second on the line ahead of the busy Riss with a 2-4 putting Ipswich back in front. The Witches looked like they were taking a big step towards victory in heat 12 as Riss and Troy Batchelor hit the front, but Becker had other ideas and passed the pair to prevent any heat advantage, meaning it was finely poised at 35-37 with three heats to race.

Doyle was the first Ipswich rider to defeat Masters in heat 13 and King worked hard to pass Morris for an important point that extended the away side’s lead to four points. An impressive away win was sealed in heat 14 as Batchelor and Riss roared to a maximum. Heat 15 was action-packed with passing galore and it ended with a 5-1 to Wolverhampton which did deny Ipswich a four-point away win but it was the Witches who went home happy with victory in the West Midlands once again.

REACTION FROM THE BOSS

Ipswich ‘Tru Mix’ Witches team manager Ritchie Hawkins reflects on Monday’s victory at Wolverhampton.

“Our two trips here have been our best two overall and I’m really pleased. It is nice to get back to the top of the table and we are making a bit of a habit of being top of the league at the moment.

“Erik Riss at reserve is a massive bonus for a team, it is down to his form last year really as he has been going well with us. It is a pity really that we haven’t got that many meetings this month. We won’t get a massive benefit out of it with only three meetings with him at reserve but obviously tonight it paid dividends.

“I don’t think we are at our best yet. We are dovetailing with people having off nights and then other people stepping up. We are not as consistent as we could be. Danny is coming into a bit of form and once we get Ben back fit, he was hitting form at reserve. Hopefully when Starkey comes back next time he will be fit, and he has been very good for us when he has been here. I still think there is a lot more improvement in us.

“Ben did very well, he was far from 100% fit. Maybe he could have had a few more points but certainly a fully fit Ben Barker would have scored more points. He did a good job for the team and manage to contribute like all six did. That is what we need to be doing.

“Starkey has seen a different specialist today and had an MRI scan and they have found the problem. They’ve said he needs two to six weeks of recovery to be fully fit and he has already done one of them. We are hoping that it will be on lesser side, and he will be with us next meeting.”

RIDER OF THE NIGHT

Reserve Riss was busy as expected and racked up a stunning 16+1 from the maximum amount of seven rides.

WHAT IT MEANS

Ipswich pick up three points which means they head back to the Premiership summit whilst Wolverhampton drop to fourth after their second home defeat of the season, both at the hands of the Witches.

UP NEXT

The ‘Tru Mix’ Witches pairing travel to King’s Lynn for the third round of the Premiership Pairs on Thursday 7th July. Tickets can be purchased on the gate.

RACEDAY PREVIEW: WOLVERHAMPTON – PREMIERSHIP (A)

By Henry Chard

All the details ahead of our Premiership fixture with Wolverhampton.

WHEN & WHERE

The ‘Tru Mix’ Witches travel to Wolverhampton to face the Wolves at the Ladbroke Stadium on Monday 4th July in a Premiership fixture that starts at 7.30pm.

TEAMS

WOLVES: 1. Sam Masters 8.37 © 2. Steve Worrall 6.96 3. Luke Becker 6.30 4. Ryan Douglas 7.64 5. Nick Morris 6.78 6. Drew Kemp 3.48 7. Leon Flint (RS). Team Manager: Peter Adams

IPSWICH: 1. Jason Doyle 9.95 2. Ben Barker 4.69 3. Troy Batchelor 6.17 4. R/R for Paul Starke 4.85 5. Danny King 7.95 © 6. Erik Riss 4.62 7. Danyon Hume (RS). Team Manager: Ritchie Hawkins

REFEREE: P. Carrington

PREMIERSHIP TABLE

TeamMeetingsPoints
Sheffield820
Ipswich1019
Wolverhampton918
Belle Vue917
King’s Lynn78
Peterborough97

TICKETS

Tickets can be purchased online here and are available on the gate.

THE STORY

The ‘Tru Mix’ Witches travel to the West Midlands on Monday night for their second visit to Monmore Green where they take on Wolverhampton in the Premiership. Ipswich were defeated on the road last time out after they were beaten by Sheffield in a curtailed meeting. That fixture meant the Witches had reached the halfway stage of the league campaign and with the Suffolk side sat in second place in the table, they look well placed to kick on and secure a spot in the end of season play-offs.

The Witches were hopeful of being back at full strength for the fixture with Ben Barker facing a late fitness test. The Cornishman has missed the last two fixtures but is expecting to take his place in the side after suffering ligament and muscle damage to his shoulder in a crash at Peterborough. However, Paul Starke has been ruled out of the meeting due to thumb ligament damage sustained in a crash at Sheffield last week. Rider replacement will be in operation at number four. The latest averages see Erik Riss move down to reserve whilst team manager Ritchie Hawkins has moved Troy Batchelor to number three with Danny King at number five. Ipswich were victorious on their first visit to Wolverhampton earlier this season and another win on the road would move them a step closer to securing a top four spot.  

FROM THE BOSS

Ipswich ‘Tru Mix’ Witches team manager Ritchie Hawkins gives us his pre-match thoughts…

“We are hoping to go to Wolves with a full team. Ben is recovering well; he has another week off so hopefully it continues to go well, and he can get to the weekend and feel like he has enough strength in his shoulder to ride. Starkey has survived too after a few crashes; he has been carrying a few injuries but they were fine after his crash at Sheffield so that is a very good sign. Danny wasn’t too bad after his big crash on Monday, so we are looking good to have a full team hopefully.

“Erik hasn’t been in bad form; I think he’s improved this season for us on where he was last year, and I think he is getting into a good place. Due to the rolling averages, he drops to reserve due to his poor form at the end of last season really. That gives us an extremely powerful number six and we will certainly look to make use of him being at reserve.

“Wolves will have a full side out on Monday which makes it tougher for us than last time we were there. I think we are in a stronger position than earlier in the year as well, we are riding better and have improved as a side since then. Our trip to Wolves was our best performance so far this season so if we can go there again and do the same or better it, I will be very happy.”

THE WOLVES

Wolverhampton will be looking to make it three wins in a row when they take on the Witches on Monday night. Since that home defeat to Ipswich, the hosts have steadied the ship and have not slipped up on home shale again whilst they picked up an away victory at Peterborough. They currently sit third in the table just behind Ipswich with a meeting in hand.  

Wolves will be at full strength for the clash led by captain Sam Masters who is a hard man to beat around Monmore, and the Australian recorded a maximum in last week’s win over Peterborough. The home team were without Ryan Douglas and Leon Flint in that home defeat to Ipswich but have both in their ranks this time around with Douglas having been a key rider so far this season for Peter Adams’ side.

AWAY DAYS

An adult ticket costs £19, concessions £17, juniors (aged 13-18) £8, children (aged 6-12) £1 and children under the age of 5 go free. Official programmes cost £3. For travel information head here.

For more information about the club head to Wolverhampton’s official website.

RACEDAY REPORT: SHEFFIELD 43–35 IPSWICH – PREMIERSHIP (A)

Picture courtesy of Phil McGlynn

By David Rowe

THE SCORES

SHEFFIELD 43: Jack Holder 6+3, Craig Cook R/R, Tobiasz Musielak 9+1, Kyle Howarth © 9, Adam Ellis 7, Justin Sedgmen (g) 10+3, Connor Mountain (RS) 2. Team Manager: Simon Stead

IPSWICH 35: Jason Doyle 12 (Maximum), Troy Batchelor 1+1, Danny King © 1+1 (Withdrawn), Paul Starke 4, Erik Riss 9, Broc Nicol (g) 1+1, Danyon Hume (RS) 7+1. Team Manager: Ritchie Hawkins

REFEREE: M. Bates

PREMIERSHIP TABLE

TeamMeetingsPoints
Sheffield820
Ipswich1019
Wolverhampton918
Belle Vue917
King’s Lynn78
Peterborough97

THE STORY

The ‘Tru Mix’ Witches were beaten 43-35 at Sheffield on Monday in a meeting heavily delayed by a series of crashes, and eventually abandoned two races short of a full conclusion.

The result stands with the Witches just missing out on a league point after a determined effort in adversity, with skipper Danny King thankfully walking away from an horrific spill in Heat 7.

Early on it was Sheffield who had encountered problems with Connor Mountain crashing on the back straight in Heat 2, whilst Adam Ellis suffered bike trouble before Heat 4 with Erik Riss and Danyon Hume racing to a 5-1 for the Witches.

But after a sensational ride by Jason Doyle to round Kyle Howarth off the last bend of Heat 5, the Tigers levelled with key guest Justin Sedgmen teaming up with Jack Holder in Heat 6, and the next race saw King slam into the fence on the exit of turn two, which caused him to withdraw from the meeting.

There was an extensive delay whilst repairs were completed, but the Witches remained in contention and could have had an advantage in Heat 8 only for Howarth to come from the back, with the gap being extended to four points with a home 4-2 in Heat 9.

Wins for Riss and Doyle in Heats 10 and 11 kept things close, but the Tigers doubled their lead when Sedgmen partnered Tobiasz Musielak to maximum points in Heat 12, a race in which King was unable to complete.

Doyle saw off a determined Adam Ellis in Heat 13 with a classy move off turn four, and the Australian was out in front again in Heat 14 when he appeared as a tactical substitute – but Paul Starke was next to hit trouble, as he went into the fence on the third bend.

The resultant delay meant the 10.15pm curfew had been reached, and a halt was called to proceedings prior to the re-run, with the gap at eight points.

REACTION FROM THE BOSS

Ipswich ‘Tru Mix’ Witches team manager Ritchie Hawkins reflects on Monday’s defeat at Sheffield.

“Danny’s crash was a bit of a turning point in the meeting. I think he’ll be okay, but there was a big interval, a big hold-up whilst they were trying to fix the fence after the crash, whereas I think if we’d been able to get straight on with it, he would probably have carried on.

“But the adrenaline dies, and I think it was the right decision for him to pull out, and he lives to fight another day.

“It was a big crash for Starkey as well, and I thought he rode a lot better than four points tonight – but I think he’ll be fine too.

“Hopefully we will have a full team at Wolverhampton (next Monday), because Ben (Barker) has another week to recover now, and fingers crossed we can have our one-to-seven there.

“Our first half of the league season has been good, I’m happy, we do need to keep improving but we’ve put ourselves in a really good position.”

RIDER OF THE NIGHT

It can only be the truly awesome Jason Doyle for another maximum, and he was seemingly set to make it 15 points before Heat 14 was stopped. There was also an excellent display from Erik Riss with two race wins.

WHAT IT MEANS

Sheffield take over from Ipswich at the top of the table, with the Witches having reached the halfway stage of their league campaign on 19 points. Elsewhere, Wolverhampton’s win over Peterborough means there is now a nine-point gap separating fourth place and those outside the play-offs.

UP NEXT

The ‘Tru Mix’ Witches travel to face the Wolverhampton Wolves at the Ladbroke Stadium on Monday 4th July in a Premiership fixture. Tickets can be purchased on the gate and in advance here.

RACEDAY PREVIEW: SHEFFIELD – PREMIERSHIP (A)

By Henry Chard

All the details ahead of our Premiership fixture with Sheffield.

WHEN & WHERE

The ‘Tru Mix’ Witches travel to South Yorkshire to face the Tigers at Owlerton on Monday 27th June in a Premiership fixture that starts at 7.30pm.

TEAMS

SHEFFIELD: 1. Jack Holder 8.92 2. R/R for Craig Cook 6.56 3. Tobiasz Musielak 6.65 4. Kyle Howarth 6.35 © 5. Adam Ellis 8.33 6. Justin Sedgmen (g) 4.57 7. Connor Mountain (RS). Team Manager: Simon Stead

IPSWICH: 1. Jason Doyle 9.84 2. Troy Batchelor 5.44 3. Danny King 8.00 © 4. Paul Starke 4.95 5. Erik Riss 4.62 6. Broc Nicol (g) 4.44 7. Danyon Hume (RS). Team Manager: Ritchie Hawkins

REFEREE: M. Bates

PREMIERSHIP TABLE

TeamMeetingsPoints
Ipswich919
Belle Vue917
Sheffield717
Wolverhampton815
King’s Lynn78
Peterborough87

TICKETS

Tickets can be purchased on the gate.

THE STORY

The ‘Tru Mix’ Witches are back on the road on Monday evening as they travel north to take on the Sheffield Tigers in the Premiership. Ipswich were in action at Foxhall last Thursday against the Peterborough Panthers, and they returned to the top of the table with a dramatic Super Heat win over the reigning champions. Monday’s fixture will mark the halfway stage of the league campaign for the Witches.

The Suffolk side will be without Ben Barker again after he suffered a shoulder injury last week at Peterborough and as was the case last Thursday, Broc Nicol will guest in his place at reserve. Team manager Ritchie Hawkins has tinkered with the riding order for Monday’s fixture moving Troy Batchelor to number two, Paul Starke to number four and Erik Riss will ride at number five. The Witches were beaten by the Tigers on home shale earlier this season and will be looking to put things right at Owlerton and keep hold of top spot in the Premiership.

FROM THE BOSS

Ipswich ‘Tru Mix’ Witches team manager Ritchie Hawkins gives us his pre-match thoughts…

“After Peterborough last Monday, we knew that Ben would be missing a few meetings and I was pleased with Broc when he came in as a guest earlier this season for us. We always like to keep consistency with the guests and if they do a good job, we will use them again. In the first meeting Broc did for us I was pleased with how he fitted in with the team and we are building up a relationship there. I know he didn’t have the best night last Thursday but that happens. He is in for Sheffield and then we have a week off and next week we will know a little more about Ben, his injury, his recovery time and how he is. So, we will review things next week with Ben and how we are going to cover him in future meetings.

“I’ve changed the riding order for Monday, we are in a good position at the moment, so I thought it was a good opportunity to try a couple of things and have a look at a couple of things I want to see and see their reactions to being at different numbers. It’s a decision I have taken because we are in a good position in the league at the moment at the halfway point and it will be an opportunity to learn a few things about the riders. We will see how it goes.

“It will be a really tough test on Monday. Even though we are top of the league I think Sheffield are probably the best side in the league at the moment and are performing the best. I think we have a lot of improvement in us, and I don’t think we are quite at the place we need to be to be at their level at the moment. There is a possibility we could be there in the play-offs, so it is a good chance in this league match to experiment, learn and make sure we are ready for when it really counts towards the end of the season.”

THE TIGERS

Sheffield were many people’s favourites for the title before the season started and they have lived up to that billing so far in 2022. The Tigers have already qualified for the League Cup final, and they boast a perfect home record in the Premiership with three wins from three. Last Thursday they picked up four points on the road with victory against King’s Lynn and they will be aiming to continue their good home form and take top spot from the Witches on Monday night in front of their supporters.

The hosts boast a powerful-looking top end with Grand Prix rider Jack Holder at number one and British champion Adam Ellis at number five. In addition to that they have Tobiasz Musielak in their ranks who top scored last time out with 13 and skipper Kyle Howarth who racked up 12+1 in that win at King’s Lynn. They have also recently brought in former Witch Jake Allen at reserve in a bid to strengthen the bottom end of the side but he will be missing for this fixture due to injury with Justin Sedgmen guesting in his place. The Tigers will use rider replacement for the injured Craig Cook.

AWAY DAYS

An adult ticket costs £19, concessions £17, children (12-16) £6, children (under 12) £1 and children (under 5) go free. Official programmes cost £3. All the stadium is open except the back straight which remains closed for safety reasons. There is seating in the Panorama Room, which also boasts a restaurant and bar overlooking the track. There is a fast-food bar, and the Panorama Room Restaurant also offers a ‘Speedway Special’ carvery with a choice of meats. The Panorama Room Restaurant has large bar with ideal viewing facilities in addition to the carvery. Reserve your table now by calling Owlerton Stadium on 01142 343074. For travel information head here.

For more information about the club head to Sheffield’s official website.

RACEDAY REPORT: IPSWICH 45-45 PETERBOROUGH (IPSWICH WIN SUPER HEAT) – PREMIERSHIP (H)

By Henry Chard

MEETING SPONSORS

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THE SCORES

IPSWICH 45: Jason Doyle 11+1, Paul Starke 4+2, Danny King © 11, Erik Riss 7+2, Troy Batchelor 5, Broc Nicol (g) 1, Danyon Hume (RS) 6. Team Manager: Ritchie Hawkins

PETERBOROUGH 45: Michael Palm Toft R/R, Justin Sedgmen (g) 9+2, Hans Andersen 7+1, Ulrich Ostergaard 4+2, Chris Harris © 14+1, Benjamin Basso 11+2, Jordan Jenkins (RS) 0. Team Manager: Rob Lyon

REFEREE: B. Horley

PREMIERSHIP TABLE

TeamMeetingsPoints
Ipswich919
Belle Vue917
Sheffield717
Wolverhampton815
King’s Lynn78
Peterborough87

THE STORY

The ‘Tru Mix’ Witches returned to the top of the Premiership after claiming a dramatic Super Heat victory over Peterborough on Thursday night at Foxhall.

The hosts had Broc Nicol in for the injured Ben Barker at reserve whilst bottom side Peterborough arrived in Suffolk depleted by injuries to Scott Nicholls and Michael Palm Toft. There was nothing to separate the two sides all evening as the visitors produced a battling performance against the odds and it looked like they were on course for an impressive victory on the road, going into heat 15 with a four-point lead.

However, Ipswich once again came up trumps when it mattered, as Danny King and Jason Doyle produced a 5-1 that levelled the tie and took it to a very first Super Heat at Foxhall. Panthers skipper Chris Harris won the Super Heat but with the 4-3-2-0 scoring system in play for the Super Heat, Doyle and King kept his partner Justin Sedgmen at the back for a 5-4 heat advantage that completed a remarkable comeback. Doyle top scored with 11+1.

Doyle didn’t have it all his own way in the opening heat as he had to come from behind to pass Sedgmen for the win with the points shared after Ulrich Ostergaard relegated Paul Starke to the back. Danyon Hume won heat two ahead of Benjamin Basso and guest Nicol picked up a point to put the hosts ahead. Ostergaard hit the tapes in heat three and was replaced by reserve Jordan Jenkins. Skipper King got the better of Hans Andersen in the re-run after a tight opening lap to pick up three points and with Erik Riss third it was another heat advantage to the Witches. The scores were level after heat four though as Harris won and he was followed home by Basso for a maximum to the away side.

The Suffolk side were back in front in heat five as King and Riss raced to a maximum. Both Doyle and Starke hit the deck at the start of heat six after a tight first and second bend, but the Ipswich number one was controversially excluded much to the frustration of the home fans. The visitors capitalised in the re-run recording another 1-5 to draw level once again. Troy Batchelor won a shared heat seven before Panthers guest Sedgmen won heat eight in another 3-3 as nothing could separate the two sides.

Harris’ good form continued with a win in heat nine ahead of King and Riss but Ipswich went back in front as Doyle won comfortably and Starke held off Andersen to secure the maximum in heat 10. However, the lead didn’t last long as the away side hit back immediately in heat 11 with a 1-5 from Harris and Sedgmen. The Panthers then went ahead in heat 12 with Basso and Andersen taking a comfortable maximum after King had fallen on the first lap, meaning the reigning champions held a four-point lead with just three races remaining.

Doyle was the first Ipswich rider to beat Harris on the night as he took the chequered flag in heat 13 but with the Peterborough captain and Sedgmen both in the points it was a shared heat that seemingly edged the away side closer to victory. There was a terrific battle in heat 14 as Riss and Ostergaard threw everything at each other at the front before Riss pulled clear for the victory but at the back Basso passed Hume for a crucial point that kept their lead at four points going into heat 15. However, there was more drama to come as Ipswich forced the Super Heat after King and Doyle kept the Panthers at bay in heat 15 to record a 5-1 that levelled the meeting at 45-45 after 15 heats.

It was a repeat line-up of heat 15 in the Super Heat with Doyle and King up against Harris and Sedgmen to see who would take the three league points. The Peterborough pair made the start with Harris untroubled out front but both Doyle and King gave it everything to pass Sedgmen and get amongst the points after the Panthers guest had held second early on in the race. The 4-3-2-0 scoring system in the Super Heat meant that Ipswich had done enough to get a 5-4 heat advantage which handed them a thrilling victory in front of a jubilant home crowd at Foxhall.      

REACTION FROM THE BOSS

Ipswich ‘Tru Mix’ Witches team manager Ritchie Hawkins reflects on Thursday’s win over Peterborough.

“We certainly made it very hard for ourselves. I know we missed Ben, but we really should have been able to cover that. Peterborough had a couple of riders out as well. We got over the line and got the win and three points in the end but really, we should have performed a lot better to have it done and dusted before heat 15.

“We are sneaking meetings and not winning by massive margins but as a team when one rider is having a bad night the other guys are stepping up. Danny kicked into form at the right time, and it couldn’t have happened at a better moment. His rides in heat 15 and the Super Heat got us the win.

“Everyone was talking about the incident in heat six, the referee obviously got that one wrong but in reality, we should have been good enough to get over that and for it not to affect us too much. We all make mistakes and that one was clear, but we shouldn’t have put ourselves in that position for it to prove significant.

“After Monday we are halfway through the season and whatever the result on Monday, I think we are in a good position after our first set of matches. We still have work to do in the second half of the season to make sure we get into the play-offs but points wise and league table wise I am really pleased with where we are. We obviously need to improve as the season goes on though.”

FAT CAT & DOUG WADE INSURANCE RIDERS OF THE NIGHT

The Super Heat heroes deservedly received the champagne as the Fat Cat chose King whilst Doug Wade Insurance selected Doyle.

WHAT IT MEANS

Ipswich collect three points after the Super Heat victory which takes them top of the table. Peterborough receive a consolation point for their efforts but remain bottom of the Premiership.

UP NEXT

The ‘Tru Mix’ Witches travel to South Yorkshire to face the Sheffield Tigers at Owlerton on Monday 27th June in a Premiership fixture. Tickets can be purchased on the gate.

RACEDAY PREVIEW: PETERBOROUGH – PREMIERSHIP (H)

By Henry Chard

All the details ahead of our Premiership fixture with Peterborough.

WHEN & WHERE

The ‘Tru Mix’ Witches host the Peterborough Panthers at Foxhall Stadium on Thursday 23rd June in a Premiership fixture that starts at 7.30pm.

MEETING SPONSORS

The Fat Cat – They are a small, friendly Free House where you can enjoy a wide selection of up to twenty real ales served straight from the cask from our temperature-controlled tap room. Also, on offer are up to seven real ciders as well as a selection of gins, whiskies, rums, wines and Belgian beers. They are a pub about the beer and the people so whether it is lively debate you’re after or a quiet pint in the greenery filled garden, you can find it there!

Doug Wade Insurance

TEAMS

IPSWICH: 1. Jason Doyle 9.84 2. Paul Starke 4.95 3. Danny King 8.00 © 4. Erik Riss 4.62 5. Troy Batchelor 5.44 6. Broc Nicol (g) 4.44 7. Danyon Hume (RS). Team Manager: Ritchie Hawkins

PETERBOROUGH: 1. R/R for Michael Palm Toft 7.12 2. Justin Sedgmen (g) 6.23 3. Hans Andersen 6.49 4. Ulrich Ostergaard 6.62 5. Chris Harris 6.90 © 6. Benjamin Basso 4.85 7. Jordan Jenkins (RS). Team Manager: Rob Lyon

REFEREE: B. Horley

PREMIERSHIP TABLE

TeamMeetingsPoints
Belle Vue917
Ipswich816
Wolverhampton815
Sheffield613
King’s Lynn68
Peterborough76

TICKETS

Tickets are available to buy on the gate and in advance online (until 7pm on raceday) and are priced at £20 for adults and £18 for concessions (65+). Children 16 and under go free. Official programmes are priced at £3 and are available at the stadium. Car parking is free for all supporters. Cash, debit and credit card payments are accepted on the night. Turnstiles open at 6.40pm.

THE STORY

The ‘Tru Mix’ Witches face the Peterborough Panthers for a second time in a week on Thursday evening at Foxhall in the Premiership. Ipswich were at the East of England Arena on Monday night where they suffered a disappointing 50-39 defeat in what was an eventful, much-delayed meeting due to several crashes in the first half of the meeting. One of those crashes saw Ben Barker withdrawn from the meeting and a CT scan the following day revealed ligament and muscle damage to his shoulder which is estimated to keep him out of action for two to six weeks. Broc Nicol will guest at reserve in his place for the home team on Thursday. In better news, Paul Starke returned to the side after his recent injury on Monday and he races in his first home meeting since the win over Wolverhampton last month.

The Panthers took victory last time they were in Suffolk earlier in the season, claiming a 40-50 win in the League Cup and after being beaten by the Panthers three times already this season, Ipswich will be keen to put the record straight on Thursday night and get back to winning ways as they look to return to the Premiership summit.

FROM THE BOSS

Ipswich ‘Tru Mix’ Witches team manager Ritchie Hawkins gives us his pre-match thoughts…

“Peterborough got the win on Monday and prevented us from getting anything, so over the course of the two meetings we want to match that and stop Peterborough taking anything from us on Thursday. The main objective is to get another win on the board and three points. Peterborough will be a tough test with a team of riders that like Foxhall so we need to regroup, and we will have a guest for Ben. Everyone is going to have to put in a good performance to cover for Ben because he has been very good of late.

“The riders available to cover for Ben on his average in our league are limited. So, it is mainly just the rising stars on an average below him and then you are looking at the Championship for riders that are not doubling-up, so they come on a converted average and there are very few riders not doubling-up at the moment. It is a big ask to find a reserve capable of doing what Ben could do.”

THE PANTHERS

Peterborough are currently bottom of the Premiership table after a disappointing start to the 2022 season. The reigning champions have much work to do if they are to make this season’s play-offs, but their form has improved of late with two wins on the trot on home shale including that win against the Witches earlier this week. Rob Lyon’s side now face the challenge of picking up their first away points of the season at Foxhall on Thursday.

The visitors are without captain Scott Nicholls on Thursday, with the seven-time British champion also suffering a heavy fall in Monday night’s fixture. Justin Sedgmen will guest for Nicholls who is still feeling the effects of that crash. The Panthers are also without number one Michael Palm Toft for the fixture after he injured his shoulder on Wednesday night in a crash at Poole, with rider replacement in operation in his absence. Hans Andersen and Chris Harris both know Foxhall well and enjoyed their visit in April both scoring 11+1 and Harris comes into the meeting in good form having scored 14 points in Monday’s victory. Benjamin Basso impressed with 9+1 on Monday and could be key at reserve where he is joined by Rising Star Jordan Jenkins who comes in for Jordan Palin for this fixture.

RACEDAY REPORT: PETERBOROUGH 50–39 IPSWICH – PREMIERSHIP (A)

By Henry Chard

THE SCORES

PETERBOROUGH 50: Michael Palm Toft 5+1, Ulrich Ostergaard 5+1, Hans Andersen 8+1, Scott Nicholls © 4+3, Chris Harris 14, Benjamin Basso 9+1, Jordan Palin (RS) 5. Team Manager: Rob Lyon

IPSWICH 39: Jason Doyle 14, Paul Starke 1, Danny King © 8+1, Erik Riss 1+1, Troy Batchelor 8, Ben Barker 4+1 (Withdrawn), Danyon Hume (RS) 3. Team Manager: Ritchie Hawkins

REFEREE: S.H. Kennett

PREMIERSHIP TABLE

TeamMeetingsPoints
Belle Vue917
Ipswich816
Wolverhampton815
Sheffield613
King’s Lynn68
Peterborough76

THE STORY

The ‘Tru Mix’ Witches were defeated by bottom side Peterborough in an eventful meeting on Monday night in the Premiership.

Ipswich welcomed back Paul Starke from injury for the meeting and were hoping to continue their good form and return to the top of the table with a positive result. However, it turned out to be a frustrating night with the meeting heavily delayed by several crashes and track work. Peterborough started well and but for numerous crashes early on would have been ahead but after seven races it was the Witches who held a one-point lead. However, the meeting turned after heat eight when Ben Barker crashed and was withdrawn for the meeting. After a whole host of crashes, plenty of track work took place before the action resumed and it was the hosts who kicked-on and ended up recording a comfortable victory. Jason Doyle top scored with 14 points for Ipswich.

Doyle won heat one as the points were shared with Michael Palm-Toft winning the battle at the back against Starke. The hosts went ahead in heat two with Jordan Palin getting the better of Barker at the front and Benjamin Basso picked up a point. Danny King was a winner in heat three and with Erik Riss having retired with a blown engine it looked like being a 3-3 but Scott Nicholls took a heavy fall late on in the race after getting into trouble with teammate Hans Andersen and was excluded meaning a 3-2 was awarded to Ipswich. After a delay to fix the air fence, the action resumed and Troy Batchelor was an early leader in heat four, but Chris Harris had other ideas and passed the Witches man in what was another heat advantage to the Panthers, giving them a 13-10 lead.

Doyle was a winner again in heat five but with Starke at the back, it was a 3-3. Heat six was stopped as early leader Palm-Toft fell and was excluded. The Witches took advantage in the re-run as Batchelor won and Barker joined him at the front having seen off Ulrich Ostergaard for a maximum to the visitors that edged them ahead on the night. There was yet another stoppage in heat seven with the Panthers duo of Harris and Basso comfortable at the front for a 5-1, Basso then collided with his teammate with both riders hitting the deck. Basso was excluded and the race was awarded as a 3-3. There was a further delay in heat eight as Ostergaard went through the tapes and was replaced by Basso in the re-run. The re-run saw yet another crash and this time it was Witches man Barker who fell and was excluded. The latest incident caused officials, management and riders to take a look at the track before lengthy work was done to improve conditions in the problem areas. Barker was withdrawn from the meeting and taken to hospital, leaving the Witches one rider down for the rest of the meeting. In the re-run of heat eight Basso won with Danyon Hume second, meaning a 4-2 to the Panthers to put them one point in front.

Andersen looked like he was going to win heat nine, but Batchelor produced a fine move to get past the Dane on the last lap and ensure a shared heat. The home team extended their lead in heat 10 with a 5-1 and things got worse for Ipswich in heat 11 when Doyle was excluded for causing Basso to crash. Peterborough capitalised in the re-run and recorded another maximum to extend their lead to nine points. Ritchie Hawkins responded by putting Doyle in as a tactical substitute in heat 12 and it worked to perfection as he won and was joined by teammate King for a maximum to reduce the deficit to five points with three heats to race.

Harris made it four wins from four in heat 13 ahead of Doyle and Palm-Toft passed Batchelor late on in the race for a 4-2 to the Panthers that put them on the brink of victory. Peterborough then recorded a 5-1 in heat 14 to secure the three points. Doyle produced yet another fabulous ride in heat 15 to pass both Panthers and win a shared heat but it was little consolation for Ipswich who headed home empty-handed.

REACTION FROM THE BOSS

Ipswich ‘Tru Mix’ Witches team manager Ritchie Hawkins reflects on Monday’s defeat at Peterborough.

“It was a really long eventful meeting with a lot of crashes and incidents holding the meeting up. Ben was flying until he had his crash and he looked like one of our quickest riders, so he was in for a big night which would have compensated for Erik and Starkey struggling. Once we lost him, we were in trouble, and we didn’t have enough riders going well enough to get anything out of the meeting.

“There was a little rut that appeared on turn three and four and everyone was riding on the limit and because the racing was so evenly matched, any little mistake resulted in a crash. I don’t think it was anything massively or drastically wrong like sometimes they can have, it was just a couple of riders putting everything into it and it all seemed to happen on one night. I don’t think it was anything specific.

“Paul came back and was maybe suffering from a lack of race-sharpness tonight and he was one rider who was struggling for speed as well. I’m sure he will be sore in the morning, but he has a busy period coming up racing-wise so hopefully his shoulder will strengthen up. Erik blew his engine in his first ride and that hampered his evening as well. Ben is currently in hospital with a shoulder injury being assessed.

“We were the meeting until we lost Ben, so we would have been in with a chance of getting something from the meeting and it was disappointing to lose him. There is nothing we drastically we need to worry about after that result.”

RIDER OF THE NIGHT

Once again Doyle was the main man for Ipswich, scoring 14 points from six rides.  

WHAT IT MEANS

Peterborough pick up three points which leaves them less marooned at the bottom, Ipswich remain second despite not being able to add to their points tally.

UP NEXT

The ‘Tru Mix’ Witches host the Peterborough Panthers at Foxhall Stadium on Thursday 23rd June in a Premiership fixture. Tickets can be purchased on the gate and in advance here.

RACEDAY PREVIEW: PETERBOROUGH – PREMIERSHIP (A)

By Henry Chard

All the details ahead of our Premiership fixture with Peterborough.

WHEN & WHERE

The ‘Tru Mix’ Witches travel to Peterborough to face the Panthers at the East of England Arena & Events Centre on Monday 20th June in a Premiership fixture that starts at 7.30pm.

TEAMS

PETERBOROUGH: 1. Michael Palm Toft 7.12 2. Ulrich Ostergaard 6.62 3. Hans Andersen 6.49 4. Scott Nicholls 6.23 © 5. Chris Harris 6.90 6. Benjamin Basso 4.85 7. Jordan Palin (RS). Team Manager: Rob Lyon

IPSWICH: 1. Jason Doyle 9.84 2. Paul Starke or R/R 4.95 3. Danny King 8.00 © 4. Erik Riss 4.62 5. Troy Batchelor 5.44 6. Ben Barker 4.44 7. Danyon Hume (RS). Team Manager: Ritchie Hawkins

REFEREE: S.H. Kennett

PREMIERSHIP TABLE

TeamMeetingsPoints
Belle Vue817
Ipswich716
Sheffield613
Wolverhampton712
King’s Lynn68
Peterborough63

TICKETS

Tickets can be purchased online here and are available on the gate.

THE STORY

The ‘Tru Mix’ Witches are back in Premiership action on Monday as they travel to take on the Peterborough Panthers. Ipswich are in terrific form and find themselves sat nicely in second position in the table having picked up points in all four of their last league meetings since defeat to Sheffield. That run included an away win at East Anglian rivals King’s Lynn last time out and they will be hoping to pick up more points on the road against the bottom side. The two sides met at the East of England Arena in the League Cup earlier this season with the hosts running out 53-37 winners.

Team manager Ritchie Hawkins is hoping to welcome back Paul Starke to the side following injury and will make a late decision on his fitness. Should Starke be unfit to ride then rider replacement will be used in his absence. Jason Doyle and Troy Batchelor will be in buoyant mood and looking to continue their good form after clinching victory for Ipswich in the second round of the Premiership Pairs at Foxhall last Thursday. Danyon Hume keeps his place at number seven in the Rising Star position.

FROM THE BOSS

Ipswich ‘Tru Mix’ Witches team manager Ritchie Hawkins gives us his pre-match thoughts…

“We have started the season very well so far away from home and we go to Peterborough which is a place we enjoy going to. As much as we can talk about them not being in great form in the league this season, they got a win last week over Sheffield which is no easy task, they are still the league champions, and they still possess a team full of very good speedway riders who can no doubt hit form at any point. We are going to have to be at the top of our game, as we have been in the other three away meetings, to get the better of Peterborough over two meetings next week.

“We are very hopeful of Paul being back on Monday. It is hard to run rider replacement for a sustained period of time so if he is back on Monday that will be great, but we will give him as long as he needs to see if he is fit. He has been a massive part of our team for a little while and has done a great job when he has ridden for us. He has suffered from illness and injury this season but when he has been with us, he has been very good and hopefully he can find that form when he comes back. The Showground is a place he should go well at so hopefully he will be back.”

THE PANTHERS

Peterborough are the reigning Premiership champions after a fantastic campaign in 2021 but it is fair to say that 2022 is not going to plan so far. The Panthers lost their opening five league fixtures before picking up their first points of the season last time out having got the better of Sheffield in the very first Super Heat, with the scores level after 15 heats of racing. Team manager Rob Lyon will be hoping that result gives his side confidence to start a run of positive results as they look to bring themselves back into contention for the play-off spots.

Chris Harris has been in decent form for Peterborough so far this season with the highlight being an 18-point maximum on home shale in their defeat to Wolverhampton. Reserve Benjamin Basso has also been a positive with some good scores from reserve including 12+2 in their League Cup win over the Witches at the start of the season. Jordan Palin gets the nod at number seven in the Rising Star position.

AWAY DAYS

An adult ticket costs £20, concessions (over 65), disabled and students £18, children (5-16) £5 and children under the age of 5 go free. Official programmes cost £3 with car parking priced at £1. Facilities include a 2200 capacity grandstand, grass banking on the back straight, fast food outlets on the grandstand side of the track and a licensed bar. For travel information head here.

For more information about the club head to Peterborough’s official website.

2022 END OF SEASON AWARDS NIGHT

The End of Season Awards Night will take place on Friday 4th November at Venue 16, Ipswich.

Please call into the Supporters Club hut on the second bend to book. The cost is £40.00 for ISSC members and £45.00 non-members. A £10.00 non-refundable deposit is required to secure your booking. Payment by cash or cheque only.

There will be a three course meal, disco and luxury raffle on the night. Doors open at 6.45pm for a 7.30pm start (prompt) and doors will close at 12.30am.

Due to Venue 16 needing final numbers and menu choices a month before the event, there will be no online purchases. All final payments and menus need to be back at the Supporters Club hut by 8th September 2022, this will allow time to collate information ready for Venue 16. 

Full address: Venue 16, 312 Tuddenham Road, Ipswich, IP4 3QJ.