King’s Lynn boss Lyon in bullish mood
King's Lynn team boss Rob Lyon insists today's first Elite League derby trip to rivals Peterborough in nearly a decade holds no fears for his men. (4.30pm)
Stars' number one and former Panther Kenneth Bjerre was in superb form with a five ride maximum during last week's memorable 50-40 Norfolk Arena win over champions Coventry.
Lynn's hierarchy are also hopeful another Peterborough old boy Niels-Kristian Iversen is fit to race after dislocating his shoulder against the Bees. Iversen underwent intensive treatment with Polish club Gorzow's medical staff over the weekend.
'It'll be a shame if we haven't got Niels,' said Lyon. 'It'll be a big rivalry with all the Peterborough boys going back there and I'm sure it'll be a cracking meeting. Kenneth, Mads (Korneliussen), Niels, if he is fit, and even Olly (Allen) enjoys it around there. Lasse (Bjerre) will be fine and I'm sure it's his kind of track and he can get dialled in quickly and (Filip) Sitera should also go well on the big tracks.
'Peterborough will hold no fears for us, but they are a good side around their own track and they are yet to be beaten at home. The Poles are good, they've got a good top-end and are solid, so we can hope we can pull something out of it.'
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Lyon believes Lynn's thrilling win over the Bees underlines the sort of team spirit underpinning their play-off push.
'It's getting there, the boys are working well and they are enjoying their speedway. That is the main part,' he said. 'If they can do that and keep riding well then there is no reason we should fear anybody at home. The way the boys came back from potentially being 5-1 down in heats 13 and 14 to turn that around, with Mads and Lasse, was superb but everyone played there part. Kenneth was fantastic, obviously, but the team spirit was awesome. Everybody was helping out and I feel we're nearly there with it now.'
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Lynn have continued to impress back in the Elite following their decision to step up into a top flight now boasting Coventry's Russian prodigy Emil Sayfutdinov. Lyon believes the GP contender's Saddlebow recent debut is a positive sign of things to come.
'I think we haven't seen that level of interest in British speedway since Tomasz Gollob rode here,' he said. 'You saw what a special talent he is. In heat 15 he could have gone off when Kenneth went up the inside because a lot of lads wouldn't have been able to control that. He is an asset to the league without a shadow of a doubt - fair play to Coventry for bringing him to our place for his first meeting rather than waiting for a home meeting.'
Panthers' team boss Trevor Swales is wary of Bjerre's Alwalton return with Lynn's number one following up his faultess Coventry display by finishing fifth in Saturday's Cezch grand prix. Swales is demanding maximum league points after setting his men a target prior to beating Birmingham last week.
'We've dropped one point at home to Coventry and that's one too many. We need six points from these two meetings and with a bit of luck, that will take us nicely up the table,' he said. 'The play-offs are our goal and we need to start heading in that direction. All meetings are tough but Lynn looks to be one that could be particularly difficult. We know that several members of their team can ride the Showground exceedingly well. I feel sure that Kenneth would have lowered the track record again had he been riding in our colours this season and we just have to hope that he doesn't manage to do it on Monday.'
• Stars: 1 Kenneth Bjerre, 2 Sam Masters, 3 Olly Allen, 4 Mads Korneliussen, 5 Niels-Kristian Iversen or R/R, 6 Lasse Bjerre, 7 Filip Sitera.