It’s been a long time coming but the Bandits finally picked up their first home win since April against Plymouth and what a win it was!
The Gladiators were put to the sword as they came up against a rampant Bandits side in a result that has always felt like it was coming. In Plymouths defence, they had riders missing, riders coming back from injury, and it was a bruising night all round.
I’m sure as Bandits fans we can fully sympathise with the plight the Gladiators found themselves in, and equally they can respect their fans for staying to the bitter end to support both their Gladiators and the Centurions teams. Fair play and massive respect.
There was a lot to unpack from Saturday’s double header from thrills, spills and fantastic racing on a night that had a little bit of everything, good and bad.
First, the bad. Nathan Stoneman, who had been getting better with every passing week around Shielfield, was starting to weigh up a pass on Plymouth guest Harry Mcgurk before clipping the latter’s back wheel, sending him cartwheeling down the track in one of Shielfield Park’s most alarming crashes in recent memory. While Nathan was able to walk away under his own steam, he took no further part in the meeting and reports of a shoulder injury were sadly confirmed. Hopefully Nathan is back in action sooner rather than later.
Which leads me on to the good…
With Nathan out of the meeting, the Bandits had to look to their guest for the evening, Jordan Jenkins to take up some of the slack and to say he delivered would be a massive understatement. His paid 17 score played a large part in the Bandits success and despite a fall, he rode like a man possessed in a very committed guest appearance.
Think every Bandits fan had a massive thank you to give to Jordan.
That was far from the only positive from a Bandits standpoint as Leon Flint picked up his first paid maximum as a Bandit, the first of many, I’m sure. It has been well documented that it has been a real pleasure watching Leon take his first tentative laps around Shielfield as a youngster developing into a genuine Championship heat leader in a few short years.
I’ve said this in my programme notes before, but Leon is progressing into the best rider that the town of Berwick has ever produced, and he is only getting started.
Of course, Leon wasn’t the only one rattling in paid maximums on Saturday as Chris Harris was at his scintillating best once more as he rolled back the years to produce a vintage performance. Again, this has been said before but THAT heat 13 was bloody sensational and had to be seen to be believed.
By the time you read this you’ve likely seen the evidence on social media and there’s a fair probability that it will get a high number of views. His heat 10 exploits against Glasgow last week went viral with a combined 36k views on Facebook between it being shared by the club and Chris himself, at least at the time of writing.
Which brings me to my next point…
As many of you will know, myself and my good pal Marty have been providing commentary for the videos which have been shared via these channels and it is something I have had an absolute blast doing.
However, as is always the case with social media there is always a few folks with plenty to say and people are entitled to their opinion. That I have no problem with.
I fully embrace the comments which will say that the commentary should come with subtitles, or that it should be in English. I’m just a guy having a go at this and I don’t claim to be even remotely good at it.
However, if folks wish to comment, that is fine but if you’re going to criticise for the sake of criticising, at least have an answer when you get called out on it. I’ve been accused of not watching the same race I’m calling but when you’re calling the action in real time and things are moving that quickly I would challenge you to get it right every time.
However, not all feedback has been bad, much of it has been very good and I recently had an email from someone who had some good feedback and I thought I would share it with you here.
I have left their name out of this as they requested, but this is what they had to say.
Just the other day I came across an old Bandits 4 match compilation DVD from the very start of the 2005 season.
Bandits v Sheffield (PT), v Hull (Challenge), v Newcastle ((PT) & v Glasgow (PT).
Great entertainment, particularly when probably my least favourite rider of all time, Phil Morris, gets his knickers in a right twist against Super Makovsky.
The video has dubbed introductions and some commentary during replays but nothing during the actual racing.
It made me realise how lucky we at Berwick have been this season thanks to Graham McCleary having the foresight to invite you to join him and provide live commentary. I’m then led to believe that you had the foresight to invite Marty to join you.
You have a great commentary style with loads of passion and nearly as many cliches.
I must admit that I do like your nickname as The Shouty Brothers, which I have heard coined on the terraces.
Standing on the terraces watching the action unfold, I defy anyone not to get excited.
But you get to commentate on some of the best speedway in the country, with a great view of the iconic Shielfield Park.
We’re all jealous.
But I don’t think anyone could do as good a job (albeit unpaid) as you guys do.
Keep up the great work.
To that person, I thank you very much for your feedback and remember the words a wise man once told me…
Like what you like and don’t be a d**k!
Of course if you wish to agree, or disagree with the Mythman, have an idea for a feature, or you simply wish to chew the fat over all things speedway, you can email me firstname.lastname@example.org or get in touch via the JB Speedway Media Facebook page. If your compliments, or indeed gripes can be contained to limited characters you can tweet @Mythman666.
Until next time…and there will be a next time.
Right, I’ll hae’tae gan.