By Henry Chard
WHEN AND WHERE…
The ‘Tru Plant’ Witches face the Poole Pirates at Wimborne Road on Thursday 8th August in a Premiership fixture that starts at 7.30pm.
POOLE: 1. Jack Holder 7.63 2. R/R for Richie Worrall 5.22 3. Nicolai Klindt 7.37 4. Josh Grajczonek 6.95 © 5. Brady Kurtz 7.29 6. Nico Covatti 4.95 7. Ricky Wells 4.20 Team Manager: Neil Middleditch
IPSWICH: 1.Chris Harris 6.83 2. R/R for Cameron Heeps 6.26 3. Danny King 6.42 © 4. Jake Allen 5.80 5. Richard Lawson 6.75 6. Edward Kennett 5.71 7. Krystian Pieszczek 5.36. Team Manager: Ritchie Hawkins
REFEREE: C. Gay
VENUE: Wimborne Road
WHAT’S THE STORY?
The ‘Tru Plant’ Witches make the long trip to Dorset on Thursday as they end their week with a clash against table-toppers Poole. Ipswich were in action on Monday at King’s Lynn in the East Anglian derby and were heavily beaten 57-33 on a night to forget for the Witches. The Suffolk side have visited Wimborne Road twice this season and have picked up a consolation point in both ties having narrowly lost in league and cup.
The Witches will be without Cameron Heeps on Thursday following his crash at King’s Lynn on Monday. The Australian withdrew after the fall and has suffered tendon and ligament damage to the knee and ankle. The full extent of the injury won’t be known for a few days and rider replacement will be used at number two. Ipswich will be pleased to have Chris Harris in their side after he missed the last visit to Poole due to being away on international duty. Harris was a league winner with Poole last season and tends to go well there. Danny King was the hero last time as he scored 13 and won the final two heats to claim a consolation point for his side. The Witches will be keen to put right the wrongs of Monday and do themselves justice in this top of the table showdown.
FROM THE MANAGER…
‘Tru Plant’ Witches team manager Ritchie Hawkins looks ahead to Thursday’s clash…
“We go to Poole on Thursday and it is a fresh day. We have had two very good performances at Poole and the boys will be looking to do well there. Everyone will be looking forward to it and we want to put on a good show.
“Monday’s defeat does not have any bearing on this meeting. We wanted to do well on Monday as it was our local derby. We go into every meeting looking for a result and that will be no different at Poole, we will try and perform and win. We are in a very good position, but we don’t want to let it slip and everyone wants to win.
“Finishing top could prove vital, we don’t know but we want to finish top. Going to Poole and getting a result could help us achieve that. Whatever happens, we want to do well but I suppose there is that added aspect that we are the top two sides at the moment.”
It’s no surprise to speedway fans to see Poole currently sit at the top of the Premiership. The club have become accustomed to winning trophies in recent years and have that winning formula and mentality at the club. They look set to compete in the play-offs again in 2019 and have had to overcome a series of injuries this season. They have just one defeat to their name at home this year and have narrowly beaten the Witches twice in cup and league action at Wimborne Road.
The Pirates are without Richie Worrall who has a long-term injury and like the Witches, they will operate rider replacement at two. Jack Holder has moved up to the number one spot this month as Brady Kurtz returns from injury at five. Like the Witches, the Pirates have strength throughout the team, and they know that a win will on Thursday will be another step towards topping the table and having first pick of opponents in the play-offs.
ON THE ROAD…
Poole ride in blue, white and black race jackets and race at Wimborne Road. The track measures at 299.1 metres with the track record belonging to Antonio Lindback who set a time of 56.91 in June of 2006. An adult ticket costs £18, concessions and seniors £15, students £12, youths (aged 11-15) £7, children (aged 5-10) £4 and children under the age of 5 go free. For travel information head here.
For more information about the club head to Poole’s official website.
AROUND THE TRACKS…
Wolverhampton comfortably beat Belle Vue 54-36 at Monmore Green whilst King’s Lynn beat Ipswich 57-33 at the Adrian Flux Arena.