IF the weather forecast had been right, there’s no way on earth this fixture would have taken place.
But many of those present at South Tees Motorsports Park would most probably have wished the predicted rain had bucketed down after all, as Redcar Bears fell to a limp defeat.
Four of the team could leave the stadium safe in the knowledge they had done what was asked of them, but they simply didn’t get the support they needed to make a serious bid for victory.
Eleven last places in 15 races at home aren’t going to win you a meeting.
With his first choice motor away being tuned, the usually reliable Jan Graversen struggled badly. He even came out on Carl Wilkinson’s machine for one ride but to no avail.
Rafal Konopka had a nightmare of a meeting, falling of his own accord in every on of his four races.
He’s developed a nasty habit of hitting the deck unaided recently but to do it in every race is only going to make the alarm bells ring louder and is not the sort of form that’s going to do anything but make the Ecco Finishing Bears promotion start losing patience.
Luke Crang also fell in his opening ride, though his crash was more painful and resulted in a trip to James Cook University Hospital to have X-rays on a shoulder injury.
Crang was second when he went down in front of the pits and though Ritchie Hawkins was too close to avoid running into him, the Ipswich rider deserves credit for taking action to ensure the incident wasn’t more serious.
That race was awarded and, with Graversen having fallen and remounted, the 5-1 to Ipswic gave the visitors a lead they were never to lose.
A 5-1 from the Bears in heat 13, earned after Richard Lawson and Aaron Summers both passed Richie Worrall, narrowed the gap to 40-38 but the Witches ended with a bang, posting 5-1s of their own in the final two heats.
Given what they’d had to endure earlier, you felt that was a likely outcome when Graversen and Konopka lined up against Cameron Heeps and Hawkins in heat 14, and Worrall and Rohan Tungate completed to job against Summers and Hugh Skidmore – who had two and three race wins respectively to their credit – in the final race.
That last 5-1 also ensured Ipswich of four Premier League points.
BEARS: Aaron Summers 11, Carl Wilkinson 10, Hugh Skidmore 9, Richard Lawson 7+1, Jan Graversen 3+1, Rafal Konopka 0, Luke Crang 0 (w/d).
WITCHES: Rohan Tungate 11+1, Richie Worrall 8, Cameron Heeps 8, Ritchie Hawkins 7+1, Morten Risager 6+1, Adam Ellis 6+1, Gino Manzares 4+1.