Rocket and Witches have a busy day

A BANK Holiday home and away double will see Ipswich and Rye House scrap for seven points and a hoped-for May Day Premier League boost.

A BANK Holiday home and away double will see Ipswich and Rye House scrap for seven points and a hoped-for May Day Premier League boost today.

The ‘Sackers’ Witches entertain the Rockets at Foxhall Stadium this afternoon, looking to keep their decent form going, while the inconsistent Rockets know they are capable of beating Pete Simmons’ side, just as they did in a challenge meeting earlier in the season.

It promises to be a busy afternoon for riders, fans and machinery, with all roads heading west to Hertfordshire at the conclusion of this afternoon’s Foxhall clash.

Team boss Simmons is hoping for three points from the home meeting and at least a point from the clash tonight.

And he has no doubt who holds the key for the home side.

“Jerran Hart was in superb form at Rye House in the challenge meeting earlier in the season,” Simmons said.

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“And I hope he can reproduce that again. Against Sheffield on Good Friday on a dry afternoon, he was excellent, so hopefully the conditions and the Rye House track will combine to make it a good day for him.

“We certainly need him to impact, as he had a quiet meeting at Redcar, but he’s so vital to our success.”

The Witches gained a draw at Redcar despite Kevin Doolan blowing an engine on parade and Morten Risager blowing an engine while leading heat 10.

Ipswich travel to Edinburgh later this week without Risager and Lasse Bjerre, both required in Denmark for a compulsory meeting.

With Bjerre up to second in the new Witches averages, the Suffolk side will use R/R for him and bring in Derek Sneddon for Risager.

That however is for later, today it’s about Premier League points.

The loss of Steve Boxall before a wheel had been turned in anger was a sign that the Rockets start to the new season would be a tough one.

Poole star Jason Doyle was quickly drafted in as a replacement and has anchored a solid top end with Jordan Frampton and Chris Neath both playing their part, Neath securing an early maximum in the narrow 46-44 opening home win against Sheffield.

The problems for promoter Len Silver though have been further down the team where ex-Somerset man Ritchie Hawkins has failed to settle in his new surroundings. Neither reserves Ben Morley or Australian Nelson have yet established themselves in their first Premier League season leaving the Rockets with a mid table look about them. Two defeats already at home, by Newcastle and Newport, have proved that fortress Hoddesdon isn’t what it once was, while brittle away showings at Scunthorpe and Leicester have had the fans wondering if the promotion will look to shake things up in the near future.

Although there were more positive signs in the recent 54-39 victory over The Lions on Easter Monday when Neath and Doyle top scored with paid 13 points apiece.

Nelson should move into the team proper today, with the new averages out, Luke Bowen moving to reserve.

For the Witches, despite Bjerre now No.2 in the averages, the Suffolk side have no current intention of changing the riding order.

Today’s teams

Ipswich: 1 Kevin Doolan, 2 Taylor Poole, 3 Lase Bjerre, 4 Morten Risager, 5 Chris Schramm, 6 Jerran Hart, 7 Chris Mills.

Rye Housel 1 Jason Doyle, 2 Nelson, 3 Ritchie Hawkins, 4 Chris Neath, 5 Jordan Frampton, 6 Ben Morley, 7 Luke Bowen

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