Wednesday April 11, 2018
Just when it looked as though the weather might finally have mercy on the “BP Mitchell” Rockets, the wet stuff returned with a vengeance to bring a premature halt to their SGB Premiership clash at home to Leicester.

The Rockets’ previous three matches had all been postponed a full day or more ahead of their scheduled start times. On this occasion, the fixture got as far as Heat 8 and an abandonment at 25-23 that was two races shy of a declarable result.

Things had bubbled along nicely up to that point, with new Rye House signing Aaron Summers making an immediate mark by winning Heat 1 ahead of the hard-chasing Michael Palm Toft and Chris Harris as the Hertfordshire side opened with a 4-2.

The seemingly ageless Stuart Robson followed up by capturing Heat 2, and the Rockets’ lead was then extended to 12-6 as Edward Kennett and Krzysztof Kasprzak left 2016 British Champion Danny King trailing in Heat 3.

Hans Andersen became the first visitor to take the chequered flag in winning Heat 4, and the Dane’s second victory in Heat 6 was followed by further Leicester successes by King in Heat 7 and the combo of Michael Palm Toft and Kyle Newman in what proved the finale, as the score closed to 25-23.

By now the rain was falling, and indeed both MPT and Newman came close to falling en route to their 5-1. With conditions worsening and rider visibility becoming a real issue, referee Christina Turnbull abandoned the meeting following discussion with both captains and their team managers.

It was a decision that Rye House Team Manager Peter Schroeck fully concurred with. “It was definitely the right call. As soon as I saw Heat 8, I made my own mind up that this was going to get too dangerous; they were sliding all over the place. I know it is so early in the season and we all want to run these meetings through, but from a safety point of view we couldn’t carry on.

“It would have been good to reach at least Heat 10, and get one match out of the way, but now we have to start all over again. It’s just one of those things. If we HAD run them, the next two races would have been a lottery; it wouldn’t have been good Speedway, and whichever team would have won it would have left a sour taste in the other side’s mouths.”

“We only had eight races tonight, but there were still positive signs to come away with. Aaron (Summers) went in with a bang straight away, and he would have had a really good night if the weather hadn’t interfered because when he came out again in Heat 8 the track was already deteriorating and creating a lottery of things. K.K. (Krzysztof Kasprzak) was brilliant, and Ed (Eddie Kennett) too – but it’s a bit unfair to single anyone out. They all got stuck in and had a go – you know, Max (Clegg) wasn’t far away – and it blew the cobwebs away. That’s the main thing. It’s been such a long winter, and I’ve never seen anything like the weather disruption these last few weeks in all my years in the sport.

“We’ve just got to wait for the weather to improve. There’s plenty more from the boys to come.”


“BP Mitchell” Rockets:
Aaron Summers 5+1 (3 rides), Krzysztof Kasprzak 5+1 (2), Stuart Robson 4+1 (2), Edward Kennett 4 (2), Scott Nicholls 4 (2), Chris Harris 3 (2), Max Clegg 0 (3).

Michael Palm Toft 7 (3 rides), Hans Andersen 6 (2), Kyle Newman 4+2 (3), Danny King 4 (2), James Sarjeant 2 (2), Martin Vaculik 0 (2), Krystian Pieszczek 0 (2).

Abandoned after 8 heats - Rain - Result does not stand.

Supporters Postscript 1:

Supporters should note that given the meeting was abandoned prior to the completion of Heat 10, they will be entitled to reduced admission at any one future meeting this season (or next) at Rye House. The reduction will be based on the admission paid at the Leicester match and the heat at which the match was abandoned.

Please retain your admission tickets from the abandoned fixture. Details of the discount across all the club’s different price bands will be issued shortly on the Rye House website.

Supporters Postscript 2:

The 50:50 raffle prize was left unclaimed. The winning strip was Yellow 121-125. The holder of the winning strip can claim their prize at the Speedway Office on the fourth bend at the next home meeting against Wolverhampton, on Wednesday, April 25th.