SPEEDWAY POSTPONEMENT - FRIDAY MAY 25:
Scunthorpe v Lakeside - OFF
POOLE have confirmed Stefan Nielsen suffered a broken leg in a crash at Wimborne Road on Wednesday.
Nielsen, who also rides for Championship club Scunthorpe, reared badly on the fourth turn in Heat 12, hitting the fence alongside the start/finish line.
Initial hopes were that had escaped with bruising, but it has now been confirmed he faces a lay-off with a break to his tibia and possibly also fibula.
Poole promoter Matt Ford said: “It's an absolute crying shame what has happened to Stefan. He was looking really good since coming into the team and we were looking to make his initial 28-day deal permanent.
“But injuries do happen in our sport and this one couldn't have come at a worse time for Stefan.
“Everyone at the club wishes him well for his recovery and I hope to welcome him back into the Pirates line-up some time in the future.
“I am in talks with a rider to replace him and will know more once the new averages kick in following Monday's meeting (at Wolverhampton), but it is a Pirates asset I am talking to.”
PETERBOROUGH’S Emil Grondal is recovering after a high-speed crash in Denmark on Wednesday.
Grondal was involved in an horrific pile-up with Patrick Hougaard during Holstebro’s Super League match at Grindsted.
He suffered multiple injuries including a cracked (but not broken) hip, a punctured lung and internal bleeding – but feeling in his legs thankfully returned after initial concerns.
Panthers promoter Ged Rathbone said: “I’ve spoken to people who were there, they tell me this was a dreadful crash and there’s absolutely no doubt that Emil’s neck brace and helmet saved him from very, very serious injuries.
“He’s been completely battered down his right-hand side especially, but he’s going to be attempting to walk again later today hopefully, and obviously it’s a huge relief that the feeling is back in his legs.
“This sort of thing is another reminder of the dangers of the sport, and the risks the riders take for their careers and for our entertainment.
“Despite his injuries, Emil is a typical speedway rider so he’s already talking about hopefully getting back racing by the middle of June!”
LAKESIDE recovered from a nightmare start to power to a 53-37 win at Redcar in the first match of their mini Northern tour.
Such a scoreline looked unlikely when the Hammers trailed 2-10 after two races, and they suffered a further blow when Ben Morley was withdrawn following a Heat 5 crash.
But with their heat-leaders in dominant form thereafter, the Purfleet side turned on the style to notch their first away victory in the Championship.
Adam Ellis scored 13 points from five rides with Richard Lawson on 11+1, whilst reserve Zach Wajktnecht contributed 11+2. Ben Barker top-scored for the Bears with 10+1.
Hammers boss Will Pottinger said: “We responded really well to what was really a disastrous start in the first two heats, and we won nearly every race after that.
“The boys did a great job and we’re more than happy with the four league points from a convincing win away from home – it’s just a shame about Ben getting hurt.
“It felt like the lads found their gating gloves after a ride each, but I was always pretty confident that might be the case. There was no panic after going down early – we know the team are good enough to come back.
“It’s always quite satisfying when the home team has to use a tactical substitute on their own track, and it was a really good all-round performance from us.”
Redcar promoter Kevin Keay said: “It was an extremely disappointing and frustrating result.
“We need to take a serious look at the side and see what we need to do to improve the situation as quickly as possible as we will not put up with performances like we saw tonight, and tough decisions may need to be made very soon.”
SHEFFIELD skipper Kyle Howarth was involved in two late 5-1s to lead the Tigers to a 48-42 win over Workington at Owlerton.
The home side trailed by two points with three races remaining – but Howarth first combined with Charles Wright for maximum points in Heat 13 over Rene Bach and Nicolai Klindt.
And after a shared Heat 14, it was Howarth and Lasse Bjerre who sealed the Tigers’ first Championship win of the campaign with a 5-1 over Ty Proctor and Dan Bewley.
Bjerre top-scored with 12+1 with Howarth on 11+1, whilst Proctor collected 12 for the Comets and returning reserve Mason Campton added 10+1.
Sheffield boss Simon Stead said: “To say we haven’t been riding anywhere near our best would be an understatement.
“Tonight we kept finding ourselves a couple of points behind after getting ourselves back in it.
“But we got the guys together during the interval and we finished really strongly. It was a great response from them, we worked together as a team and ground out a much-needed result.”
ISLE of Wight boss Jackie Vatcher said she could barely believe the events in the early stages of the Warriors’ 32-56 home defeat to Kent.
After five races the Kings led the National Trophy fixture 24-5, with the home side having suffered no fewer than six falls or retirements.
Guest Danny Ayres had the first of two engine failures from winning positions, Scott Campos withdrew with shoulder damage after a Heat 3 fall, Chris Widman and Shaun Tedham failed to complete races, and Ben Hopwood was disqualified from Heat 4 after a clash with Jack Thomas.
Kent won 13 of the 15 heats in all with Jack Thomas top-scoring on 13+1 whilst Nathan Stoneman collected 12.
Vatcher said: “The first five heats did for us and cost us any hope of being able to compete tonight. I’ve never known a meeting where so many things went against us so quickly.
“Fair play to Kent who made the most of our problems, but we are better than we showed tonight – we must start showing it.”
SCUNTHORPE have injury concerns ahead of tonight’s (Friday) Championship clash with Lakeside.
Already without long-term absentee Steve Worrall, the Scorpions have also been rocked by the broken leg suffered by Stefan Nielsen at Poole on Wednesday, and several of their other riders have been in the wars.
Gino Manzares and Josh Auty were both involved in crashes at the Eddie Wright Raceway last week, but both are set to ride tonight – whilst the Hammers operate rider-replacement for wrist injury victim Ben Morley.
Scunthorpe promoter Rob Godfrey said: “I think Lakeside will be good value. Former Scorpion Nick Morris and Richard Lawson are one of the strongest top twos in the league, so our supporters need to brace themselves for another titanic struggle for the match points as we bid to make it six wins in a row in all competitions.
“I’m absolutely gutted for poor Stefan. He really got himself well set up this season, and he’d been reaping the rewards for that. I wish him a speedy and trouble-free recovery.”
Lakeside boss Will Pottinger said: “Ben went to the hospital and there’s obviously some damage, but we won’t know how much until he’s had x-rays or maybe even until the swelling goes down.
“We hope it’s not too bad, but he definitely won’t be riding on Friday, and our only option is rider-replacement which gives more rides to Kyle (Newman) and the reserves.
“Hopefully that will work okay, especially if Zach (Wajtknecht) carries on with how he’s going at the moment.,”
EDINBURGH will hand a debut to Coty Garcia in tonight’s (Friday) KO Cup first leg against local rivals Glasgow.
The Monarchs have signed Garcia to replace Matt Williamson, who is taking time out of the sport.
And manager Alex Harkess says staging the opening encounter at Armadale could work in his side’s favour – as long as they use it to their advantage.
He said: “We've got the first leg so it is important that we take an advantage. We haven't done that against Glasgow up to now this season, but it's time to turn the tide.
“They are having an up and down season, not that different from ourselves and they've already had a huge home defeat, but we know what they are capable of.”
Glasgow welcome back Chris Harris and Paul Starke, and boss Cami Brown said: “We're at our best with all seven of our riders in the team.
“We won at Edinburgh earlier in the year but they're a different proposition now, and I believe we're in for one of the best Scottish derbies of recent seasons.”
BELLE Vue Colts host Eastbourne tonight (Friday) in the clash of last season’s National League Grand Finalists.
The Colts took the title in 2017 but suffered a heavy defeat when they visited Arlington earlier in the year.
Paul Bowen is still sidelined for the hosts and is replaced at reserve by Ben Rathbone, with Ben Woodhull stepping up into the top five.
Woodhull said: “There’s no added pressure on us to ensure we stay top. After all, it’s all about the top four.
“We’re in an excellent position points-wise and we’ve got the drive to maintain our unbeaten home record but I’m certain the Eastbourne boys will be determined to make our job a tough one.”
FRIDAY MAY 25:
CHAMPIONSHIP: Scunthorpe v Lakeside 7.30
CHAMPIONSHIP KO CUP 1st round 1st leg: Edinburgh v Glasgow 7.30
TRAVEL PLUS NATIONAL LEAGUE: Belle Vue v Eastbourne 7.30
SUNDAY MAY 27:
CHAMPIONSHIP: Newcastle v Redcar 6.30
CHAMPIONSHIP KO CUP 1st round 2nd leg: Glasgow v Edinburgh 3pm
NATIONAL TROPHY: Buxton v Cradley 3pm, Coventry v Birmingham 3pm, Mildenhall v Plymouth 3pm
MONDAY MAY 28:
PREMIERSHIP: Belle Vue v Leicester 12pm, Leicester v Belle Vue 7.30, Rye House v King’s Lynn 7.30, Swindon v Somerset 7.30, Wolverhampton v Poole 7.30
NATIONAL TROPHY: Kent v Isle of Wight 3.30
Results Thursday May 24, 2018;
Redcar 37 (Ben Barker 10+1)
Lakeside 53 (Adam Ellis 13)
Championship points: Redcar 0 Lakeside 4
Sheffield 48 (Lasse Bjerre 12+1)
Workington 42 (Ty Proctor 12)
Championship points: Sheffield 3 Workington 1
Isle of Wight 32 (Danno Verge 8+2)
Kent 56 (Jack Thomas 13+1)
National Trophy points: Isle of Wight 0 Kent 4