Witches swoop for double signing

IPSWICH Witches have made two new signings in an effort to reinvigorate their flagging season.

Out have gone Olly Allen and Carl Wilkinson, while in have come Poland’s Chris Slabon and Australian Kozza Smith.

Speedway Director Chris Louis: “I’m sorry that it hasn’t worked out for Olly and Carl but we couldn’t just let the situation slide given our league position.

“We wish them both well and hope that they are soon fixed up elsewhere.”

The news hardly comes as a major surprise to Witches fans, who have had to endure a disappointing season up to now, with Allen’s average having dropped almost two points from his starting average in March.

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A host of injuries have also not helped the Norfolk-born racer.

He has been replaced by Slabon, who will be remembered by Witches fans when he last rode for the club in 2002.

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Slabon was born in Poland but moved to Canada at an early age.

He comes from a speedway family with both father Robert and grandfather Adolf having ridden speedway. An Ipswich asset, he last rode for the Witches in 2002, along with an emerging Jarek Hampel.

Since then he has been riding regularly in both the Polish and Swedish leagues. He recently won the Welsh Open Championship held at Newport to alert British promoters of his abilities.

Kozza Smith’s inclusion is at the expense of Wilkinson, as a double-up rider, and Smith will be hoping for better luck in a Witches racejacket, having initially joined the club last season, before suffering two horrendous injuries while riding for the Witches, one on the opening night of the season.

The Witches embark on a string of home meetings throughout the summer holidays and clearly the introduction of Slabon and Smith is a way of hoping to start to pick up points, with the Suffolk club languishing six points adrift at the bottom of the Elite League table.

On Thursday they entertain runaway league leaders Poole at Foxhall. A morale-boosting result from that fixture is very much required, if a relegation play-off meeting at the end of the season is to be avoided.

Slabon goes straight into the team at No.2, although Smith won’t be riding, with Linus Sundstrom back for the Witches at No.7.

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