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I'll be back, vows Louis

PUBLISHED: 20:00 26 April 2003 | UPDATED: 13:48 03 March 2010

JOHN Louis today issued a 'don't write me off' message.

The promoter of Ipswich Evening Star Witches speedway team is at home recovering from a fractured skull, damaged shoulder and a broken scaphoid bone in his hand.

JOHN Louis today issued a 'don't write me off' message.

The promoter of Ipswich Evening Star Witches speedway team is at home recovering from a fractured skull, damaged shoulder and a broken scaphoid bone in his hand.

"I will be back as good as new," said the 61-year-old, who suffered his injuries when riding a 'monkey' mini moto-cross bike at Foxhall Stadium on April 17.

He spent four days in Addenbrooke's Hospital, Cambridge, after being rushed from Ipswich Hospital after it was discovered he had a blood clot near his brain.

"I have already had discussions with my wife Magda and with team manager Mike Smillie about our team," said Louis.

"I know I have to take life easy for a while and will get back into the routine a step at a time. Hopefully, it will not be too long before I am back to normal."

Louis' crash was an innocuous one as he took a break from putting up the safety fence before the Witches home Good Friday Sky Sports Elite League meeting against Peterborough Panthers.

He is keen to set the record straight today.

"To start with I was not riding a 500cc speedway bike, but a child-type machine and secondly, my spill was very much a run-of-the-mill one," said Louis.

"I never felt in any great danger and was not concerned about being whisked to Addenbrooke's. It was a necessary precaution and in the end I did not have to undergo any treatment at Cambridge.

"I am still suffering from headaches but am getting stronger every day. The monkey bike is currently being straightened out and I intend to ride it again.

"I was just messing about and taking a break from working on the track. It was no big deal.

"I plan to watch the next home match against Oxford on Monday, May 5, but may take a background role. I don't plan to make it too long before I am back working as normal."

Ipswich ride at Wolverhampton on Monday looking for their second league win in nine matches. They are hoping heat leader Jarek Hampel will be back after breaking his collarbone three weeks ago. The Pole was due to ride in Gdansk for Wroclaw last night and is scheduled to be in action in the Polish League again tomorrow.

If he comes through the weekend with no ill-effects he will take his place at Monmore Green. It is obvious that Ipswich will have to make changes if their form does not improve, but their options are limited.

Despite their poor start to the season, their rolling combined average is 45.4, with a limit of 46. This rules out bringing in a rider of heat leader class to replace a second string or reserve and therefore gives no guarantee that changes will have a beneficial affect.

"Riders were told before our defeat at Oxford on Wednesday that no job is safe," said Smillie. "But unless we make multiple changes bringing in the likes of Tomasz Gollob or Greg Hancock are not feasible."

A return for Craig Boyce was ruled out because his average is too high, but one rider Ipswich could be interested in at the bottom end is Slovenian Matej Zagar, a heat leader with Trelawny in the Premier League.

Witches rider Chris Slabon has been loaned to Polish club Zielona Gora from Wroclaw. Zielona Gora also include Witches asset Toni Svab plus Billy Hamill and Billy Janniro. Slabon is due to make his debut for his new club tomorrow.


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