Bittersweet point, super Jake and Louis' thoughts: 5 things we learned about the Witches last night
- Credit: Steve Waller -www.stephenwaller.com
Ipswich Witches drew their opening night Premiership clash with Belle Vue, 45-45 at Foxhall Stadium last night. It was almost victory, but it could have been defeat. A strange night all round, but the main thing was, speedway was back.
It was an odd meeting.
The Witches took an early lead and seemed to be repelling the Aces' advances. But out of the blue the Aces struck back-to-back 5-1 maximums in heats 10 and 11 and suddenly they were ahead!
Going into the last heat the Aces were on the favoured inside grids. But it was the Witches who hit the front to look set to take the victory, before both Aces got past Jake Allen to force a draw. The highs and lows of speedway.
Jake Allen cut a despondent figure at the end of heat 15. He was in a match-winning position for the Witches but got over-hauled by both Aces in that crucial last race.
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However, Allen rode superbly all night, in his first competitive meeting of the year. Indeed, Allen wasn't going to come to England in 2021, but had a change of heart.
Witches fans last night were glad he did.
Ipswich promoter Chris Louis gave his thoughts on the draw.
"You always go away a little happier having salvaged something, although we led nearly all the way through," he said.
"It was a tough heat 15 for us against two riders who were world class and had been riding so all night. So for Danny King to go out and win so comfortably was great and it looked for a moment Jake was going to join in and we would have taken all the points.
"But Jake looked to me to to lack a bit of race fitness which is understandable, because he's only just got over here last minute and had to sort out a lot of things. But he's scored good points for us tonight and I'm really pleased with him for that."
Anders Rowe has made a brilliant start to his Witches career. He top-scored again for the Witches against the Aces, kicking on from his super performance at King's Lynn.
He's been a great addition to the Witches and long may it continue. For his fellow reserve, Drew Kemp, it was a frustrating night. But he mustn't be concerned. Having seen both Witches opening meetings, Kemp is looking just fine - it's a long season.
It's seven days until the Witches race again. And hopefully the crowd will be as big and noisy as it was against the Aces. It's Sheffield at Foxhall, next Thursday.