Witches record biggest win of season

Elite League BIpswich Witches 55 Eastbourne Eagles 35IPSWICH Witches moved off the bottom of the Sky Sports Elite League with another rugged performance at Foxhall Stadium last night as they recorded their biggest victory of the season.

Mike Bacon

Elite League B

Ipswich Witches 55 Eastbourne Eagles 35

IPSWICH Witches moved off the bottom of the Sky Sports Elite League with another rugged performance at Foxhall Stadium last night as they recorded their biggest victory of the season.


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Despite a wet track, similar to the one that saw them see off Wolverhampton two weeks ago, the Witches again got down to the job in hand with no fuss.

Led by Scott Nicholls, the Suffolk side were more determined and solid throughout. Their home form is returning with some aplomb and the decent-sized crowd, that had to wait for an 8pm start, were thrilled by their efforts.

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Heavy rain had put the track under water in some parts, but great efforts by the track staff got the meeting on.

And Nicholls flew from the outside in the opening race, with Lukas Dryml going wide and Tobi Kroner coming through as Ipswich took the lead.

Scunthorpe's Simon Lambert was guesting at reserve for Ipswich, but he was at the back as Carl Wilkinson won well.

The track was obviously difficult and Robert Miskowiak struggled to pass Cameron Woodward as the Eagles drew level.

Troy Batchelor got himself in all sorts of trouble coming out of turn two in heat four, rearing alarmingly and crashing. He was excluded as the Eagles hammered home a maximum 5-1 to take a four-point lead.

But then the Witches woke up.

Daniel King and Miskowiak gated to a heat five maximum, before Nicholls brought the crowd to their feet with a stunning piece of riding in the conditions.

Coming out of the second bend at the back, Nicholls went past firstly Gustafsson and then Dryml in stunning fashion, the first passes of the night, to join Kroner at the front.

Woodward won the next, with Davey Watt gifting Lambert a point, before Wilkinson barged Joonas Kylmakorpi out of the way coming out of turn four in heat eight.

Ipswich had turned the meeting round and they made it four 5-1 maximums in five races with the hard-riding Miskowiak joining King at the front in heat nine.

Watt inflicted the first defeat for Nicholls before it all went wrong for the Eagles when Watt's tactical ride saw him stuck at the back and Wilkinson rode manfully to hold the Eagles No. 1 off.

Watt was straight back out to win heat 11, but heat 10 had been critical for the Sussex side, who were now staring down the barrel.

Batchelor and Nicholls were too good in heat 13 and the Witches were now 14 ahead, with two to go.

Woodward's tactical ride was the last throw of the dice for the visitors, but their night was summed up when he packed up while chasing the impressive King.

Nicholls passed Kylmakorpi in style as Ipswich wrapped up the meeting and sent their fans home very happy.

Ipswich: S Nicholls 11+3, T Kroner 8+1, R Miskowiak 7+1, D King 13+1, T Batchelor 7, S Lambert 2+1, C Wilkinson 7+2.

Eastbourne: R/R, J Kylmakorpi 8, D Watt 9, C Woodward 5, L Dryml 5, S Gustafsson 4, R Kling 5+1.

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