Edinburgh Monarchs need to up their game, says boss Alex Harkess

Edinburgh Monarchs team manager Alex Harkess has called on a collective effort in a bid to improve the team's recent fortunes.

By Neil McGlade
Thursday, 19th May 2022, 5:54 pm
Updated Friday, 20th May 2022, 2:22 pm

The Capital septet suffered their second home defeat of the season in the Championship after the Leicester Lions returned to the Midlands with a 50-39 victory at Armadale last Friday.

Arch-rivals the Glasgow Tigers ran out comfortable winners a fortnight previously and Harkess admits they must get back on track when the Redcar Bears are the visitors to West Lothian tonight.

The Monarchs have raced the fewest meetings so far in British speedway's middle tier and currently sit second bottom of the Championship.

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The Edinburgh Monarchs 2022 team. Picture: Jack Cupido

"Leicester, Poole and Glasgow are probably the three strongest teams in our league and we've faced two of them at home already," Harkess told the Evening News. "But the opposition really isn't the important part. It's up to us to produce so we've got to start doing that. We look for our heat leaders to win races and, when they do, things are so much easier. If we're only winning five or six races out of 15 then we're really up against it. Everybody has to do a little bit more and help one another.

"It makes it more difficult for the new lads when the track changes because of the weather. There was a lot of heavy rain before the meeting last week. They're not used to it. When you're coming from Australia and you're used to racing in conditions that match the Sahara then it's not easy. But they've got to adapt and learn. The track is super smooth this season as there are no bumps or holes after it was bladed over the winter so good away riders who come to Armadale, there is nothing to put them off."

Harkess added: "When a good rider is out in front and riding the perfect line, it's very difficult to pass them. We need to make sure we're getting to the first bend in front. We need to start winning at home and then picking up some points on our travels."

Monarchs will operate rider replacement for Norwegian Lasse Fredriksen who is in Hungary for a European Championship qualifier.