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King’s Lynn Stars chief pulls plug on meeting as Rob Lyon takes a step back

PUBLISHED: 15:19 26 July 2017 | UPDATED: 15:19 26 July 2017

King's Lynn Stars' chief Keith Chapman. Picture: Ian Burt

King's Lynn Stars' chief Keith Chapman. Picture: Ian Burt

It never rains but it pours for King’s Lynn speedway.

Owner Keith Chapman pulled the plug on last night’s scheduled meeting against Wolves because of concerns about the attitude of some of his riders – on the day it was announced that co-promoter Rob Lyon was stepping back from his daily involvement with the club.

The decison to postpone the meeting came after rain fell on the Adrian Flux Arena, with the possibility of more to follow – but Chapman’s explanation revealed much more than meteorogical concerns.

Two weeks ago wet conditions forced a long delay during the home meeting against Poole as problems with the track were sorted, with some home riders seemingly unwilling to race: Chris Holder was subsequently banned for 28 days for refusing to race.

That was clearly on Chapman’s mind yesterday.

“After the events of a fortnight ago and what happened with the riders I’m petrified about it happening again,” he said. “We had our biggest ever meeting sponsor lined up tonight with corporate entertaining and there’s no way I was going to risk riders arriving and not fancying the conditions again.

“It’s something I am simply not prepared to do ever again. If I believe conditions may be even slightly tricky I will cancel because of the attitude of some top-flight riders.

“I’d like to apologise to everyone but this is the way I feel right now. We will, of course, look for alternative dates and I will race every night of the week if I have to in order to get our fixtures completed.

“I hope the timing of the postponement has minimised inconvenience.

“This is a time when everyone connected with the club needs to show how much they want the sport as soon as we resume racing at home.”

Meanwhile, Lyon, the former team manager, who took on a bigger role with the Stars during the winter, says increasing business and personal projects have forced him to take a step back.

“I must stress this has nothing to do with the difficult events of the last fortnight, this has been a situation which has developed over a number of weeks,” he said.

“I just haven’t been able to give it the time the role needs and I need to take a step back. I also felt I needed to say something because a lot of people have been asking why I haven’t been in line to step in for Dale Allitt as manager since he was taken ill.

“I’m always there for the club on the end of the phone and very happy to give my opinion on things. I will do all I can.

“I have lots of friends at King’s Lynn and I look forward to seeing them again soon.”

Keith Chapman said: “I fully understand Rob’s reasons and appreciate his honesty.

“I’m sure it’s not the end of his time with the club and we are sure to see him again very soon.”

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