5 things we learned about the Witches last night
- Credit: Steve Waller -www.stephenwaller.com
Ipswich Witches lost the East Anglian bragging rights in a dramatic finale at Foxhall Stadium last night. MIKE BACON takes a look.
BAD WEEK ALL ROUND
It's been an awful week for the Witches.
First, they lose No.1 Jason Crump with injury during the team's poor performance at Wolverhampton on Monday night, and then then lose Jordan Stewart in a crash at Birmingham on Wednesday.
Cameron Heeps ended last night in hospital with a shoulder injury.
And to finish it off was the way the Witches lost to Lynn. They were ahead throughout but you sensed there was going to be sting in the tale as the Stars grew in confidence. And when it came, it hurt the Witches.
That victory over the Stars at the start of the season in Norfolk seems a long time ago now.
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The Witches need to find replacements for Crump, Stewart and possibly Heeps, who could all be out for a while.
That's not easy, but guests and rider replacement won't cut it for long in what is a hugely competitive league.
Of course, saying just get in replacements is easy, it will be far harder for owner Chris Louis and team boss Ritchie Hawkins to do. But the defeat to Lynn is likely to focus minds even more than they already had been.
SPEEDWAY THE WINNER!
Ha! Ha! Very funny, I hear Witches fans say!
Yes, hardly the comment Ipswich fans would have been saying as they trooped out of Foxhall having seen their team lose in the last heat to their local rivals.
But for anyone watching the sport for the first time in a good-sized crowd on a warm night, they couldn't have helped but find it all gripping.
However, let's park that thought - in a local derby it's all about winning... And the Witches blew it.
Ipswich team manager Ritchie Hawkins had to go straight to Ipswich Hospital with Cameron Heeps after the meeting.
"Obviously I'm really disappointed about that result. Well done to Lynn, no complaints, they rode well. It's just the end of a very bad week, and we've ended up with three riders in hospital.
"At the moment we are short of bodies. We are looking at what we can do to bring people in. At the moment the rider pool isn't massive though.
"I'm totally gutted about the result. All we can do is regroup, rebuild and focus on getting the team geared up for the rest of the season."
It doesn't get any easier for the Witches.
On Monday they travel to Belle Vue and next Thursday they entertain Peterborough. By then expect to see a new Witches face, or maybe two, in the team.