A happy homecoming as Eastbourne Eagles make triumphant return

Action from Arlington. Picture by Mike Hinves
Action from Arlington. Picture by Mike Hinves

It was to prove a happy homecoming for the Eastbourne ‘Fineprint’ Eagles as they made a triumphant return to Arlington on Saturday evening.

Their first home fixture for three weeks saw the Sussex side turn on the style and see off the challenge of the ‘in-form’ Redcar Bears by a 50-40 margin.

For Eagles heat leader trio Richard Lawson, Edward Kennett and Lewi Kerr were all in superlative form, each only being denied maximum returns by two late wins from the Bears stand out rider, Erik Riss.

Georgie Wood also grabbed an important race win for the hosts but Kyle Newman in particular drew plaudits with a string of determined rides throughout the course of the meeting.

For the Bears Riss took the honours in both heats 13 and 15 in impressive style, but by that time the Eagles already had the match in the bag.

Until then they had restricted the Bears to just two race winners, the second of these being when British Champion Charles Wright was deployed as a tactical substitute in heat 12.

Wright combined with Michael Palm Toft for a 4-2 which was to prove the visitors only heat advantage of proceedings.

Club director Ian Jordan was swift to lavish praise on his side “That was outstanding speedway in my opinion. Redcar came to race and delivered some outstanding action on a track several of their top line riders had not seen before. It was especially gratifying after some of the shenanigans at the last fixture three weeks ago, to race a team who want to reward Speedway supporters and show off their skills and they did that all night”.

“The track rode superbly despite the hot weather and blazing sun and thanks must go to our track staff Darren, Neil and Roy for their efforts in preparing it.”

“Coming on the back of our superb travelling victory at Newcastle, this was just the performance and the result we wanted to set us up for an exciting run in to the end of the season”

“Charles Wright, Erik Riss and Michael Palm Toft all commented on how much they enjoyed their first visits to Arlington. The Bears are hot Play Off Contenders and we wish them well with that but of course we have to meet them again in the Knockout Cup and this meeting tonight has set the Semi Final up perfectly and it should prove an absolute belter of a meeting in both Legs”.

“We were able to welcome back some of the Mascots who had been so badly affected and upset by the some of the actions in our previous meeting and they all had a fantastic night and big thanks are due to Kate from our Community Team and the Riders for their time in chatting to the youngsters and their parents”.

“We are now looking forward to the Meeting next Saturday against Sheffield with great enthusiasm and with the cut-off date for team changes and alterations due on Wednesday 28th August, to be implemented on Saturday 31st August, we will be working with and assessing the knee ligament injury suffered by Alfie Bowtell very closely before deciding on whether to make any formal Team Changes. We will give Alfie every opportunity to get the best possible expert opinion, but in the event that he is not able to ride again this season, we have a number of plans under consideration”

“Finally, an apology to any fans whose entry may have been delayed by a 4g outage in the area that caused our card Readers to intermittently fail. This is an issue that occurred once earlier in the season and can be affected by atmospheric and high pressure conditions in the very rural location where Arlington is based. However, we have learned of some major issues in parts of the area in the last week, affecting O2 and Vodaphone users especially. We will work on back-up solutions in the coming week, but as before, would ask that supporters always have a "cash payment" option and we thank everyone for their patience last night and also thank our Turnstile Staff who were once again a credit to the Club”.

“We were already working on an enhanced pre-order ticket solution for next season to augment the excellent Card Reader facilities we have and will hopefully be able to offer even more payment solutions in the near future as we build the infrastructure further”.

“With the Championship Shield Final against Leicester as well as the aforementioned league matches against Sheffield and also Birmingham still to look forward to it promises to be a fantastic end to our first season back in the Championship” Jordan concluded.