Ipswich 60: Danny King © 14+1 (Paid maximum), Cameron Heeps 12+1, Rory Schlein 12 (Maximum), Lewis Kerr 10+2 (Paid maximum), Danyon Hume 6, Michael Härtel 4+2, Connor Mountain 2+1
Newcastle 29: Ashley Morris 12, Michael Palm Toft (g) 6, Matthew Wethers 4+1, Carl Wilkinson 4, Ludvig Lindgren© 3+1, Lewis Rose 0
The ‘Tru Plant’ Witches began their Championship league campaign in emphatic style with a thumping 60-29 win over Newcastle at Foxhall on Thursday.
After exiting the Championship Shield, attentions turned to the league and the pressure was on the home side to get back on track and that is exactly what they did. The hosts were dominant from the off as they piled on the points and eased to victory as the away side put up little resistance. Danny King recorded a 14+1 paid maximum on the night to continue his good start to the season.
It was the perfect start to the night for the home side as King and Härtel flew from the gate to record a 5-1 as opposing captain Ludvig Lindgren suffered bike troubles on the opening lap. Ashley Morris won heat two as the points were shared. Witches guest Lewis Kerr won heat three ahead of Diamonds guest Michael Palm Toft with Cameron Heeps giving it his all in third for a 4-2 to the Witches to continue the strong start. Heat four was called back after Morris was adjudged to have jumped the start. Rory Schlein was fastest in the re-run and he beat Morris comfortably for the win with Danyon Hume third to give the hosts a 16-8 lead.
Heeps won his first heat of the year in heat five as he was followed home by Kerr for another maximum to the home side as the Suffolk side dominated the early stages. It was one way traffic and the home side banged in another 5-1 in heat six as King won again and he was joined by Härtel who nipped past both opposition riders on the back straight of the opening lap. Schlein picked up another three points with ease in heat seven but Connor Mountain couldn’t get amongst the points as he was passed by Matthew Wethers for third at the start of the second lap. The away side got their first heat advantage of the meeting in heat eight as Morris got his second win of the night ahead of Hume and Wethers battled past Härtel for third on the penultimate lap making it 31-17 to the home side.
Heeps was looking on song again and won heat nine as the superb Kerr was right behind him once again for another 5-1 as the hosts looked out of sight. King continued his unbeaten night with another win in heat 10 ahead of Palm Toft as firstly Wethers fell whilst at the back and then Härtel fell on the final lap meaning a 3-2 to the Foxhall outfit. Schlein was in a league of his own again in heat 11 and won by a distance ahead of the Diamonds pair. Heeps made it three wins on the spin as Hume and Morris had a terrific battle for second as they passed and re-passed each other with the visiting reserve winning the battle eventually but a Witches 4-2 made it 46-25 to the home side.
Schlein and King blew away the opposition in heat 13 for another 5-1 as the home side showed no signs of slowing up. Kerr completed a terrific night as he won heat 14 but Mountain couldn’t hold onto second and was passed on the third lap by Wethers meaning a Witches 4-2. The home side ended the night how they started with another 5-1 thanks to King and Heeps making it a convincing 60-29 win to open the Championship campaign.
Painting Pixels Rider of the Night
Cameron Heeps got the sponsors Rider of the Night award after scoring 12+1 that included three race wins.
After a shaky start to 2018 the pressure was on the Witches, a strong start was needed to settle the nerves on and off the track. That is exactly what King and Härtel delivered in heat one to set the tone for the night as the Witches gained in confidence and recorded a comfortable win.
The ‘Tru Plant’ Witches are back in action on Thursday 3rd May against Lakeside Hammers in the Knockout Cup at Foxhall.