Witches like lambs to the slaughter

IPSWICH Witches were like lambs to the slaughter as title-chasing Swindon were once again in rampant form on their big 363-metre circuit, winning 64-26.

IPSWICH Witches were like lambs to the slaughter as title-chasing Swindon were once again in rampant form on their big 363-metre circuit, winning 64-26.

Without Jesper B. Jensen the rider replacement operated, but won only three points from the Dane's four scheduled starts.

Jensen had been top scorer when the Witches crashed 68-24 at Blunsdon in July, but without him they got off to a bright enough start that saw frowns on the Robins faces.

Kim Jansson has normally struggled on this track but he held off the four-lap challenge from Tomasz Chrzanowski, otherwise unbeaten by an opponent, and the Witches only trailed 4-2 after the first race.


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Tobias Kroner ran last in the opening race in his rider replacement outing but showed a clean pair of heels to the home riders in heat two and notched another win two heats later with Robert Miskowiak tucking in behind for a Witches 5-1.

Trailing 13-11 after four heats suggested that Ipswich might re-write the script but in the remaining 11 heats they were cannon fodder and managed only 15 more points.

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With two wins under his belt Kroner was named as a tactical rider for double points in heat eight but the German made a poor start and trailed in some distance behind the others. It was the logical move for team manager John Louis to make but it misfired badly.

All of the Robins top five were in, or were paid for, double figures and they supplied six different race winners. It was another tough night in a difficult season for Ipswich and the presence of Mark Loram would have made it more bearable. There was little to cheer for the Witches, but Swede Jansson battled hard in all of his races and did not buckle when under pressure, and only once did he fail to score.

Kroner too was lively, especially when he started well, and looks an increasingly bright prospect.

Skipper Chris Louis was generally off the pace while the Polish trio of Miskowiak, Zibi Suchecki and Marcin Rempala were a huge disappointment on a big circuit that tends to suit riders from their homeland.

There was no bonus point at stake as the Witches host Swindon at Foxhall on Saturday night.

Last time they pulled off a shock two-point win and after this performance they should have every reason to wish to restore some pride in front of their own fans.

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