Sunday June 02, 2019
LEICESTER Lion Cubs made it two National League wins from two by overcoming Stoke 50-40 – despite being reduced to five riders!

Already without concussion victim Luke Ruddick, the Roger Webster Lion Cubs were up against it from the start as No.1 Ellis Perks came to grief when leading Heat 1, and took no further part due to a shoulder injury.

That left the Cubs without two of their top three, and with their other team members facing an increased schedule in far from ideal conditions after rain before the meeting and during the early stages.

But the home side displayed superb character led by skipper Danyon Hume, and with 15-year-old Jordan Palin proving to be an inspired choice of guest.

Thompson Twins Dan and Joe put the Cubs ahead with an emphatic 5-1 in Heat 2, and both were involved in back-to-back mid-meeting maximums to give the home side control of the meeting.

First Dan combined with Hume over Joe Lawlor and Luke Priest in Heat 7, whilst Joe was joined up-front in Heat 8 by Ryan MacDonald after a fine ride on the outside on the opening lap.

Stoke had a terrific guest No.1 in Anders Rowe, who raced against Hume no fewer than five times and frequently frustrated the Cubs captain with his inside cut-backs.

But the Potters’ only significant support for Rowe came from Connor Coles, and they were unable to land any major advantages.

Both Thompsons were in the wars late on, Dan being fetched off by Shelby Rutherford’s inside challenge on turn 4 in Heat 11, and Joe running out of room when attempting to round Corban Pavitt in the next race.

But there was no major damage done, and Joe’s third place in Heat 14 backed up by a Palin victory ensured the win for the Cubs, whilst the Potters were left point-less from the meeting when Coles ran a last behind Hume and Palin in the final race.

Leicester co-boss Dave Howard said: “The riders and mechanics were all heroes today. With so many two-in-a-rows, everybody in the pits did an absolutely unbelievable job.

“Obviously it was really unfortunate that Ellis got injured in Heat 1, and in these conditions riders could easily have been keen not to take extra rides.

“But every rider did what we needed, it was a great performance and in the circumstances to prevent Stoke from taking a point was outstanding.”

The Cubs are back in action with a tough trip to Kent a week on Monday (June 10), but the Watling JCB Lions resume their Championship campaign at home to Edinburgh on Saturday.

LEICESTER 50: Danyon Hume 16, Jordan Palin 15+1, Dan Thompson 7+2, Joe Thompson 7+2, Ryan MacDonald 5+1, Ellis Perks 0, Luke Ruddick r/r.
STOKE 40: Anders Rowe 17, Connor Coles 9, Joe Lawlor 4, Luke Priest 4, Corban Pavitt 3+1, Shelby Rutherford 2+1, Joe Alcock 1.

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