Wednesday October 23, 2019
LEICESTER built up an 18-point lead in the National League Knockout Cup Final with a 45-27 first leg home victory over Belle Vue.

Rain forced the clash to be abandoned with three races still remaining, but the Roger Webster Lion Cubs again produced another solid team display to give them hope ahead of Friday’s decider in Manchester (7.30).

Joe Thompson top scored for the hosts thanks to a series of impressive passing manoeuvres whilst captain Danyon Hume dropped just one point from four rides.

No.1 Ellis Perks was unbeaten by an opponent in his three outings while Dan Thompson provided some vital support from the engine room of the team.

Ryan Terry-Daley also had a solid night while fellow reserve Josh Embleton got very little reward for his battling efforts.

The Lion Cubs got off to a dream start with a maximum in the opener before being pegged back to two points in the reserves race.

But a streak of three successive advantages between Heats 4 and 6 saw them open up a 10-point lead, including a stunning 5-1 from the Thompson twins who both rode magnificently to get by fellow teen talent Jordan Palin.

The visitors continued to plug away but a hat-trick of 4-2s and a gate and go 5-1 from Perks and Hume in Heat 10 saw the Lion Cubs take control.

But as the rain continued to pour, Perks and Palin tangled into bend one of Heat 13 with the Belle Vue youngster hitting the deck hard.

And with Palin taking a trip to the medical room in worsening conditions, both teams agreed to call it a day after 12 throughly entertaining first leg races.

Skipper Hume said: “Everyone knows we come on stronger as the meeting goes on and it was a real shame we couldn’t get those last three races done as I think we’d definitely have gone away with over a 20-point lead.

“The track was just getting greasier and greasier the more rain that came down though and it was unsafe to carry on racing.

“We’ll definitely take an 18-point lead though; we all love racing at the National Speedway Stadium so we know we’ve got what it takes to win this.”

Members of the 2019 Watling JCB Leicester Lions Championship title winning side were also present and paraded the league trophy in front of supporters.

LEICESTER 45: Joe Thompson 12+2, Danyon Hume 11, Ellis Perks 8+1, Dan Thompson 7+1, Ryan Terry-Daley 6+1, Josh Embleton 1, Luke Ruddick R/R.
BELLE VUE 27: Kyle Bickley 7, Leon Flint 6, Jordan Palin 4, Danny Phillips 3, Connor Bailey 3, Ben Rathbone 3, Ben Woodhull 1.
Abandoned after 12 heats - Rain - RESULT STANDS

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