King’s Lynn skipper Allen has no divided loyalties
King's Lynn skipper Olly Allen leads his men against speedway royalty tonight when the Stars visit former club Coventry in the Elite League.
Allen won the title and a host of other honours during a productive spell at Brandon, but the Norfolk rider backs the top flight new boys to hold their own at the reigning champions (8pm start).
'When I signed for them they were the club in speedway,' he said. 'We had some great times. I think we won something every season I was there. We won the title in 2007 and I think we also had a treble that year. It was a good period for the club and it got me back on track too as a rider.
'I have always referred to them as the Man United of speedway – they have the finance, they have a nice stadium, they have got a great history and a culture of success. They treated me well and they are a club I will be always fond of. Having said that, it would also be nice to get one over them.'
Allen believes timing could be everything this evening with the Bees poised to be without GP qualifying trio Peter Kildemand, Przemek Pawlicki, Edward Kennett. Tai Woffinden makes a guest appearance for the champions.
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Lynn ace Iversen is also on GP qualifying duty with Lee Complin replacing Lasse Bjerre at reserve and Tomas Topinka in for Sam Masters.
'Coventry might be a bit weakened which should help,' he said. 'I like the track there. It's important to gate well, which suits me, but sometimes it can catch away riders out if it's very grippy. That would suit our boys anyway. I think everywhere we go now we are looking to get something. Maybe a point, maybe two or more.
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'Peterborough was a good point. When they have a full side they are a strong team, but I think there were more points for us. Unfortunately Sam and Filip (Sitera) had bad days. That is not pointing fingers or moaning because we are all entitled to those, but you can't win away matches if you are carrying two riders. That was the problem. No rider goes out to ride poorly. We get paid for the points we score, we don't get paid a wage so you can guarantee all riders go out and give it 100pc.'
That point was underlined by some ferocious late action between Danish World Team Cup allies Nicki Pedersen and Stars' number one Kenneth Bjerre at the East of England Showground.
'Whenever Nicki is in the meeting you know it's going to be hard racing, especially racing against Danes which spices things up even more,' said Allen. 'If you get those on the track together you don't really want to be in that race. The rivalry is intense. The English boys don't have that to the same extent but when the World Cup comes around they are like best mates. It almost spurs them on.'
Bees boss Alun Rossiter is looking forward to the long-awaited home debut of Emil Sayfutdinov.
'It will be great to finally see Emil at Brandon and it was also important for us to get a rider such as Tai in, because it isn't easy to find guests when there is so much going on this weekend,' he said. 'King's Lynn are a good side so we're going to need a solid performance, but I'm confident we can do that and get a win despite being without riders.'
• BUILDBASE BEES: Emil Sayfutdinov, Przemek Pawlicki R/R, Ryan Fisher, Kenni Larsen, Tai Woffinden, Nick Morris, Justin Sedgmen.
• KING'S LYNN: Kenneth Bjerre, Niels-Kristian Iversen R/R, Mads Korneliussen, Tomas Topinka, Olly Allen, Lee Complin, Filip Sitera.