An 11-point deficit is “more than recoverable” asserts team boss Mark Lemon as Belle Vue prepare to face fellow title contenders Swindon in Leg 2 of their Knock Out Cup semi-final in Manchester.
A challenging first round pit a heavily depleted Rentruck Aces against a near-full strength Robins at the Abbey Stadium last Thursday where they went down 50-39 after losing two of their riders.
But though the visitor’s hold the advantage, they face the daunting task of defending it without talisman Jason Doyle who is in Sweden this weekend for the 2017 Stockholm FIM Speedway GP.
And while the hosts are also short the injured Jack Smith and GP reserve Max Fricke, they’re still packing ample firepower with guests Hans Andersen and Ben Hopwood to match the Robins.
Dan Bewley, who will take his first laps since picking up an injury on bank holiday Monday, said: “Though the line-ups are peppered with guests, it doesn’t discredit the meeting.
“It is a sizeable margin the Robins have built up and we’re going to have to work hard to pull that back, and the only way to do that is if we’re all firing and working together as a team.
“Mark Lemon has done a great job with the guests. Hans Andersen was awesome at the Premiership Riders’ Individual so we’ve certainly got a chance; three heat advantages is all we need.
“We’re going to be very busy over the next week and any amount of track time will prove invaluable, particularly ahead of our play off semi-final against Wolverhampton. It’s all to play for.”
The home leg of Belle Vue’s KOC semi-final Swindon is on September 22, while Leg 2 of their Play Off clash with Wolverhampton now take place on September 27, after Monday’s postponement.
Words: Hayley Bromley
Images: Ian Charles
Tickets are available now at www.bellevueaces.co and at the stadium box office on race night.