Win put Edinburgh Monarchs on brink of history

Monarchs' Craig Cook gets the bumps for his unbeaten display at Scunthorpe. Pic: Ron MacNeill
Monarchs' Craig Cook gets the bumps for his unbeaten display at Scunthorpe. Pic: Ron MacNeill
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Edinburgh Monarchs will become the history boys if they defeat Peterborough Panthers at the East of England Showground tonight following their nail-biting 48-43 Premier League speedway triumph at Scunthorpe Scorpions yesterday.

That made it ten wins in a row for Monarchs, who last achieved that milestone back in 2003 – the year of their first championship crown.

Monarchs director Mike Hunter, while accepting the club are on the cusp of rewriting their own record books, said: “It would be nice if we did it. However, Peterborough is not on our target list of away wins. But the way the team is riding right now anything is possible.”

Some people believed victory at Scunthorpe’s Eddie Wright Raceway was a foregone conclusion after Monarchs crushing home win at Armadale on Friday, and certainly after Monarchs stormed into a 20-10 lead after just five races there was little evidence to dispute that optimism.

But the home team, bolstered by the return of Thomas Jorgensen at reserve, reeled off four heat wins in succession to wipe out Monarchs advantage. And in a match that swung one way then another, the Capital side, who refused to buckle, fought back and led 43-42 with one heat left.

Typically, it was No.1 Craig Cook who finally extracted the sting from the Scorpions challenge by winning the deciding race, however partner Max Fricke, who had his best away match in Monarchs colours, followed him home for a superb 5-1 over Josh Auty and the impressive Ryan Douglas, which sealed three match points for the conquering Monarchs.

Cook was fantastic as he picked up a 15 point maximum, but the whole ream contributed something, and it’s this solidity which has turned Monarchs into such fearsome opponents so early in the season.

Hunter added: “When we saw our ten point lead disappear nobody panicked or did anything rash and the 3-3 Derek (Sneddon) and Steve (Worrall) managed in the penultimate heat was absolutely critical to the outcome of the whole match. The fighting spirit in the camp is sensational at the moment and let’s hope it continues this evening.”

Scunthorpe: Douglas 12, Auty 11, Howe 8, Jorgensen 7, Birks 4, Williamson 1.

Monarchs: Cook 15, Fricke 10, Worrall 7, Sneddon 5, Masters 5, Sedgmen 4, Fox 2.