Racing Club Warwick
Townsend Meadow

Ground No. 106
Visited - Saturday 21st October 2006
Result - Racing Club Warwick 1-1 Market Drayton Town
Competition - Midland Football Alliance
Attendance - 102

Thanks to Wolves’ game against West Brom being moved to the Sunday, it gave me the chance to visit another new ground, so when looking down the local fixtures, I decided to choose Racing Club Warwick’s home game against Market Drayton Town.

Townsend Meadow was a ground that I’d seen get a number of bad reviews, so when setting out, I was interested to see what I’d find. The journey down to Warwick went well, with one change in Leamington, arriving into the town just after 1:30pm, so I decided to walk straight down to the ground, passing through the picturesque town centre on the way, before finding the ground itself with relative ease, nestling just beyond the racecourse from which the club gets its name from.

After going in, I was greeted with a scene fairly typical of a Midland Alliance ground. The turnstile block was located in one corner, and along the side that you enter is situated the Hampton Road Stand. A small stand, it’s only 3 rows high, and is flanked by four (yes 4!) dugouts, two either side of it. Sitting on the halfway line, it only runs for a short distance, with the rest of this side taken up by hard standing. At the far end, sheltered by a number of trees is more hard standing, which runs around to the far side, where like on the side you enter, is hard standing, with a small stand sitting in the middle. The ‘West’ Stand is a little longer than its counterpart opposite, but once again features three rows of seats, with a mix of old wooden chairs, and the more modern plastic tip-up variety. Finally, completing the Townsend Meadow picture is at the Racecourse End, where a number of buildings stand, including the clubhouse and changing rooms.

Having had a look round and taken a few pictures, I made my way into the clubhouse to sit down and read the programme for a while, before the game started. Both sides were sitting in mid-table, and for the first half an hour it was evident as to why! Market Drayton were just about dominating proceedings, but with their strikers having an inability to actually cleanly strike the ball, they weren’t looking likely to score, until in the 34th minute, left-back Gary Anslow stepped up to take a free-kick. From all of 30 yards, he managed to hit it cleanly, and whilst the Warwick ‘keeper got a hand to it, it wasn’t enough, and the visitors took the lead.

That was it for the first half, but in the second, the hosts got more into it and were rewarded when in the 69th minute, Matt Brown chased down a ball, collecting it on the edge of the area, before making space for himself and hitting it into the bottom corner to level the scores. After that, both Warwick and Market Drayton had spells of dominance, but neither could really make anything of the few chances they did create, so when the ref blew the final whistle, a point each seemed like a fair outcome.

Afterwards, the walk back to the station went well, and I managed to get onto a train just as the rain started coming down again, so that was good, and the journey from there was uneventful, with me arriving home just after 7pm.

Overall, it hadn’t been a bad day out, with both the town and the ground being good places to visit. Despite not being the most modern, the ground does have a lot of character, and seems undeserving of the criticism that I’d read of beforehand, so I’ll be quite happy to go back there again one of the days, and would certainly recommend it to others.

Welcome to Racing Club Warwick

The Turnstiles

Mural just inside the ground

The Racecourse End

The Clubhouse

The Far Side

Seating in the Far Side Stand

The Far End

The Far End

The Hampton Road Side

The Hampton Road Stand (badge inset)

Townsend Meadow Panoramic


No comments:

Post a Comment