Speedway News and fixtures


KING’S Lynn boss Rob Lyon is hoping his side can continue a tremendous first season back in the Elite League by building up a lead over Poole on Monday.The Stars face the league leaders in the play-off semi-finals, which means a return to the Norfolk Arena for Darcy Ward who rode recently for the Stars during their days in the Premier League.Lyon said: “At the last home meeting I spoke to the team and they all said they wanted Poole to pick us in the semi-final, that probably sounds crazy but that is the sort of team we are. We want to beat the best and I know the lads will raise their game.“You cannot deny Poole have a team which oozes quality and most of the riders enjoy riding the King’s Lynn track, especially Chris Holder and Darcy Ward, but we beat them here earlier in the season and have had a lot more practice laps since then. Maybe Poole took into account our heavy defeat at their place earlier in the season, but that was just an off-night and I can’t see that happening again.”


LAKESIDE owner Stuart Douglas admits he is delighted to be handed a local derby play-off semi-final against Eastbourne.The Hammers will stage the first leg of the tie at Purfleet on Monday, and Douglas feels the pressure is on their rivals who finished with six more points in the regular league standings.Douglas said: “It’s the fixture we wanted. We now know that the atmosphere will suit the occasion, and that really transmits in a positive way to the lads.“I feel we are really strong now, and in a good position in what has been a really closely fought League this year. The Eagles are a good side, and will be the bookies' favourite for this Semi, so all the pressure is on them. We are more than a match for them at the Arena-Essex Raceway, and I think we can also give them a pretty close run at their track.”


MILDENHALL have set up a National League Knockout Cup Final clash with Stoke after getting the better of the Isle of Wight in the semi-final.The Fen Tigers overcame the loss of skipper Jack Hargreaves to illness and won the second leg 46-44 having taken a 20-point lead into the meeting.Co-promoter Michael Lee said: “We are all chuffed to bits. If you’d said that we’d get to a cup final and the playoffs at the start of the season, we probably wouldn’t have believed it, but we’ve done it and we are incredibly proud of all the boys. “Robert Branford did a superb job for us and the rest of the team showed the spirit that has taken us so far. I don’t even mind that that I’ve had to buy them all an extra beer for doing so well!”


BELLE Vue and Peterborough had contrasting viewpoints after a controversial Heat 15 in their Knockout Cup clash saw Aces’ No.1 Rory Schlein taken to hospital.Schlein suffered shoulder and hand injuries when he was in collision with the fence, with the Panthers’ Troy Batchelor disqualified for disadvantaging his opponent. Belle Vue won the first leg tie 50-40.Belle Vue boss Jim Lynch said: “I don't want to see riding like that in speedway. It was really unnecessary and I am very upset about it."But Batchelor hit back: “It was hard, but I didn’t touch him and he didn’t fall off.”


POOLE’S injury worries intensified after three riders were forced to withdraw during their Knockout Cup semi-final against Eastbourne.Already without Thomas H Jonasson, the Pirates first saw Jason Doyle pull out having aggravated his shoulder injury, and he was joined shortly after by Dennis Andersson after a heavy crash in Heat 10.Then skipper Davey Watt came to grief in a tight first bend in Heat 12 and landed on his right shoulder, forcing him out of the re-run of the race.Chris Holder won Heat 15 to secure a narrow 46-44 first leg win for the Pirates, but they are now awaiting updates on several riders with the Elite League play-offs starting on Monday.


RECENT Lakeside signing Tomasz Jedrzejak has been ruled out for the rest of the season after suffering an ankle injury in Sweden on Tuesday.As the Pole has yet to turn a wheel for the Hammers, having been signed himself to cover injured riders, the club will revert to using the rider-replacement facility for fellow countryman Piotr Swiderski.Co-promoter Jon Cook said: “We are obviously well used to injury blows but in this case we are still in the same situation we have been in for weeks now and actually extra rides for the boys will probably be stronger in the home leg.“TJ was bound to need a ride or two to settle in and that would have been tough in such a pressured environment. We are undeterred and ready for action.”


BERWICK have recruited former King’s Lynn rider Linus Eklof to take the place of the injured Kozza Smith.The Swede will make his Bandits’ debut in the home Premier League fixture against Rye House on Saturday.Team boss Ian Rae said: “With Kozza Smith’s broken shoulder clearly going to take some time to heal, we needed an injury replacement.“Linus comes strongly recommended to us by our own Swedish riders Seb Alden, Ludvig Lindgren and the currently-injured Alex Edberg.”(FIXTURES)

THURSDAY SEPTEMBER 15:SKY SPORTS ELITE LEAGUE: Coventry v King’s Lynn 7.30 ELITE LEAGUE KO CUP Q/F 2nd leg: Peterborough v Belle Vue 7.30 PREMIER LEAGUE: Ipswich v Plymouth 7.30, Redcar v Edinburgh 7.30, Sheffield v Newcastle 7.45

FRIDAY SEPTEMBER 16:PREMIER LEAGUE: Plymouth v Workington 7.30, Scunthorpe v Leicester 7.30, Somerset v Redcar 7.30

SATURDAY SEPTEMBER 17:ELITE LEAGUE KO CUP S/F 2nd leg: Eastbourne v Poole 7.30 PREMIER LEAGUE: Berwick v Rye House 7pm, Leicester v Somerset 7.30 PREMIER LEAGUE KO CUP S/F 1st leg: Newport v Workington 7pm

SUNDAY SEPTEMBER 18:PREMIER LEAGUE: Rye House v Plymouth 2pm PREMIER LEAGUE KO CUP S/F 1st leg: Glasgow v Newcastle 2.30 PREMIER LEAGUE KO CUP S/F 2nd leg: Newcastle v Glasgow 8pm, Workington v Newport 7pm NATIONAL LEAGUE: Buxton v Isle of Wight 3pm