Speedway: Monarchs’ young gun plans Trophy upset

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Charles WRIGHT fears he may have made a rod for his own back because he is riding too well! The Englishman, 24, joined Edinburgh Monarchs at reserve on a lowly 3.75 starting average but he has scooped 15 points from two

meetings so far exceeding all expectations.

But Wright, who is hoping to help Monarchs wipe out a 14-point deficit against Glasgow Tigers in tonight’s Spring Trophy second-leg clash at Armadale, is worried people might think he can pull such heroics out of the bag every week.

He said: “I’m pretty chuffed with what I’ve done so far, it’s just a case of keeping it going and keeping my bike in top-notch condition because I always put money back into my equipment.

“Obviously, I do want to score well, just as long as nobody expects too much from me just because I’ve had two good meetings to date – I’ve probably piled pressure on myself now.”

Wright was one of the few Monarchs riders who escaped with a degree of credit in the wake of their heavy 52-38 first-leg hammering at Ashfield last weekend, yet, despite a joint top- scoring effort of eight points, he revealed he could have hit double figures with a bit of luck.

“I could have gone better at Glasgow but I had some dirt in my carburettor and I thought my bike was going to pack up as I got passed in one race. I still had some shale in my jet when I got back to the pits which had stopped the fuel getting through.

“But apart from that, I was very happy with what I scored. As a team we let things slip over the last five races and Andrew [Tully] had clutch problems, but Glasgow’s top three are very hard to beat round their own track and when they were out over the last few races that’s what done us, but I think we have got a good chance of pulling things back.”

Tigers’ co-promoter Stewart Dickson said he was “pleasantly surprised” to have won the match by such a big margin bearing in mind his side were 31-29 down after ten heats. He said: “I always knew that the Monarchs duo of Theo Pijper and Derek Sneddon would be better than our untried two Australians, however, I felt that their heat leaders would not get the better of Joe Screen, James Grieves and Josh Grajczonek, who are our top three riders.

“I swapped my reserves around in heats 11 and 12 just to freshen things up a little and it just so happened we got 5-1s in both those races and this gave us the impetus to finish the meeting so strongly.”

Dickson said he there was no way he would have predicted that Monarchs could have folded so dramatically over the last five heats handing victory to Glasgow on a silver platter, saying: “I was very surprised at that, especially as the match had been nip-and-tuck up until heat 11. To collapse the way Monarchs did was very surprising.

“And the way the Monarchs team is set up, I think they really need all their top five to be scoring. Their No. 1, Andrew Tully, only scored one point and certainly had bike problems on the day and while he is a dominant force at Armadale, Andrew has to do it away from home as Joe Screen does for us.

“If we went to Armadale and our No. 1 scored just one, we’d get skelped.”

The Tigers would seem to have the edge in their bid to retain the Spring Trophy but Dickson is wary it could all go wrong, saying: “I think we will have to use the tactical ride facility at least once tonight and it’s going to be tough on our two Australian lads, Mason Campton and Jayden O’Malley, I think our top three need to get 35 points between them to give us a chance of aggregate victory.

“Edinburgh have five riders capable of winning races as Derek Sneddon proved on Sunday. We have a good lead but I’m not convinced it’s enough.

“And that’s not me putting the pressure on Edinburgh. If one of my top three has a bad night then we won’t be able to defend our lead. I think it’s going to be a good match and our fans are going to be out in force.”