Edinburgh MONARCHS No. 1 rider Craig Cook today backed the controversial decision to release Charles Wright in favour of young German star Marcel Helfer, stating that speedway is a team sport and the side now must progress in their bid to reach the championship play-offs.
Helfer joined Monarchs last week and made his debut against Glasgow Tigers in the KO Cup quarter-final second-leg tie at Armadale. Monarchs won 52-38 to set up a tough semi-final with Ipswich Witches.
Helfer failed to score but Cook revealed the 21-year-old was on the wrong bike set-up. “I hope Marcel will be able to do a good job for us,” said Cook. “He looked good at our practice day but everyone looks good when they are out on the track on their own. He was using the wrong sprocket size on Friday but Theo (Pijper) and myself told him he mu Edinburgh MONARCHS No. 1 rider Craig Cook today backed the controversial decision to release Charles Wright in favour of young German star Marcel Helfer, stating that speedway is a team sport and the side now must progress in their bid to reach the championship play-offs. st change it if he wants to progress and get better round Armadale. It’s up to him now we have told him what to do.”
Cook said he was dismayed to see Wright dismissed but insisted the Monarchs management have the right to change the side as they see fit. “Charles was a good kid and a great character to have around the pits and he was a good reserve rider,” he said.
“It’s a shame he has gone, especially after the good meeting he had at Glasgow when he won heat 14. However, speedway is a team sport and Alex (Harkess) and John (Campbell) have obviously brought Marcel in for a reason, and we as a team are fully behind their decision.”
Cook said Monarchs are now eyeing reaching the KO Cup final but stressed Ipswich, many people’s tip to win the league, must respected despite their up and down season so far.
Cook said: “They have been a bit unpredictable this season but they are a strong side, especially with Matt Tresarrieu riding at reserve. He is capable of riding in the Elite League yet he is a tail-ender in the Premier league.”
Certainly Helfer and partner Micky Dyer could have their work cut out against the Witches, but promoter Campbell said: “I fully believe that Marcel will eventually score more points for us than Charles did, he is at a stage in his career when he needs a lot more meetings to move on up the ladder and riding in the Premier League allows him to do this.”