By Henry Chard
KING’S LYNN 42: Thomas Jorgensen 8, Scott Nicholls (g) 10+1, Cameron Heeps 1+1, Lewis Kerr © 7, Richard Lawson 12, Ricky Wells 3, Connor Mountain (RS) 1. Team Manager: Peter Schroeck
IPSWICH 48: Steve Worrall (g) 5+1, Anders Rowe 1 (Withdrawn), Danny King © 11, Jake Allen 1, Craig Cook 12+1, Drew Kemp (RS) 4+2, Paul Starke 14+2. Team Manager: Ritchie Hawkins
REFEREE: M. Bates
The ‘Tru Plant’ Witches returned to winning ways as they beat the King’s Lynn Stars in the East Anglian derby on Monday in the Premiership.
Ipswich went into the meeting having lost their last seven meetings and with Steve Worrall guesting for the injured Jason Crump at number one. King’s Lynn started well to take an early lead, but the Witches led from heat seven onwards, getting stronger as the meeting went on and proving too much for the Stars as they recorded a much-needed victory. Paul Starke starred for the visitors scoring 14+2 from reserve.
It was a strange start to the night as Scott Nicholls appeared to have touched the tapes before Worrall then went through them at the start of heat one, but both were invited back for the re-run to the bemusement of many. In the second attempt Anders Rowe was a faller on the first turn and it was a painful landing for the young Ipswich rider but he soldiered on and was back out for the third go at the opening race with all four called back again. Once the race did get going the home pair could not be caught and recorded a 5-1. There was a share of the points in heat two and it looked like the Witches were going to hit back in heat three with a maximum as Danny King and Jake Allen hit the front but Allen fell on the final lap meaning another 3-3. Richard Lawson made the start in heat four but Craig Cook produced a stunning ride to throw everything at the home rider before a last bend swoop on the final lap got the job done as he won the race to the line, and with Starke third it was the first heat advantage of the night to the visitors.
Ipswich team manager Ritchie Hawkins revealed that Rowe had dislocated his knee in his heat one fall forcing him to be withdrawn from the contest and he was replaced by reserve Starke in heat five who joined Worrall at the front for a 1-5 to the away side that put them in the lead for the first time on the night. Nicholls won heat six from the start and Cook had to hold off big pressure from Thomas Jorgensen to secure second place as a 4-2 to the hosts levelled the scores. King stormed to victory in heat seven, but Allen couldn’t hold onto second as Lawson rounded the Australian to split the pair and limit Ipswich to a 2-4 that edged them ahead again. Drew Kemp and Starke made the gate in heat eight but they couldn’t keep Nicholls behind them as he passed both on the way to the chequered flag in a shared heat that left the Witches two points to the good after eight races.
The Suffolk side then extended their lead in heat nine as Starke and Cook teamed up for a maximum. King made another fine gate in heat 10 but Jorgensen came up with a terrific cut back to fly past the Ipswich skipper coming out of the second bend of the second lap to win with Nicholls third for a 4-2 to King’s Lynn. Heat 11 was shared but there was no catching the Ipswich duo of King and Starke in heat 12 who eased to a 1-5 to put the away team eight points in front.
The Witches sealed victory in heat 13 as Cook won from the gate ahead of Lawson in second and Worrall, who having been passed by Jorgensen on the final lap, repaid the compliment on the final turn to grab third for a 2-4. The home team put Nicholls in as a tactical substitute in heat 14 but he could only finish third as Kerr beat Starke to the finish line, meaning a heat advantage to the hosts. The Stars did finish with another 4-2 in heat 15 despite Cook charging past Jorgensen for second but there was too much to do to catch Lawson at the front. That result in the final race did deny Ipswich all four points, but victory keeps the Witches’ outside play-off hopes alive as King’s Lynn’s search for a home win continues.
Ipswich ‘Tru Plant’ Witches team manager Ritchie Hawkins reflects on victory in Norfolk.
“I’m pleased to get the win but disappointed not to take four points. With the run of form we have been in and our injuries, the bigger picture is that it is another point dropped.
“Starkey (Paul Starke) was really good, and he put in a massive shift doing seven rides again. It was vital that he did that after losing Anders. Drew’s last two rides were very good too and on a normal night he would have probably shared a few more of the rides with Starkey but Starkey was going so well which was exactly what we needed after being put in a tough position.
“Anders had a dislocated knee about a month ago and it popped out again tonight. I didn’t think he was fit enough to carry on and the doctor agreed with me. He needs a bit of recuperation and I can’t see him being fit for Thursday, but I hope he will be back after that.
“Cookie (Craig Cook) is loving life at Ipswich and that is showing in his performances. It is nice to see him have a very good one tonight. I hope everyone is happy to see us beat King’s Lynn again and this time we will need to follow it up with a home win.”
RIDER OF THE NIGHT
Cook showed his former employers what they were missing scoring 12+1 but Starke probably edges him for rider of the night with a fabulous 14+2 from reserve.
WHAT IT MEANS
Ipswich pick up three points that puts them back into fourth and King’s Lynn stay rooted to the bottom of the table with another home defeat.
The ‘Tru Plant’ Witches host the Belle Vue Aces at Foxhall Stadium on Thursday 8th July in a Premiership fixture. Tickets can be purchased here.
Digital Media Manager at Ipswich Speedway