DAN Thompson raced to a brilliant six-ride paid maximum as Leicester gained a vital 50-38 away win at Kent in the NDL on Sunday.

Thompson racked up 17+1 for the Lion Cubs as they took all three league points available from an incident-strewn meeting at Iwade, with the result a major boost to their hopes of a top two finish.

The Cubs are now up to third position in the table, level on points with Belle Vue with two matches in hand, and one point behind leaders Mildenhall with one match in hand.

There was strong backing for Thompson from reserve Max James with three race wins, whilst Max Perry and Ashton Boughen both took the flag twice.

James, Vinnie Foord and Rhys Naylor were all involved in a heavy crash in Heat 2 from which all three remarkably walked away, although Naylor was withdrawn for the home side. James won the re-run with Foord disqualified, and that made it 6-5 to the Lion Cubs after Dan Thompson had won Heat 1 which had seen Boughen come to grief on lap two.

After wins for Perry and Thompson in Heats 3 and 4, the first big result came courtesy of the trusty Boughen/Thompson combination with a 5-1 in Heat 5 to put the Cubs seven points to the good – and that was backed up by a 4-2 in the next as Boughen superbly defeated Ben Morley whilst Foord took third ahead of Connor King.

The next two races were shared but the Royals threatened a comeback with a 5-1 in Heat 9 from Tom Woolley and King, and then a 4-2 in the next when Cubs guest Josh Warren managed to split Morley and Ashton Vale.

That meant the Cubs were only 31-28 in front, but they kicked on again with a 4-2 in Heat 11 from Thompson and Ablitt, and they virtually secured the match in a dramatic Heat 12.

Royals reserve Sam Woolley fell on the first bend as Perry and Foord got the better of King, and with the home rider then suffering mechanical trouble the Cubs were able to take a 5-0 to extend their gap to ten points.

Thompson defeated Morley and Nathan Ablitt in Heat 13 after James had fallen, but James quickly recovered to post a fine win over Tom Woolley in Heat 14 to increase the margin to twelve.

All that remained was for Thompson to complete his paid maximum and he did so in sensational style with a third-to-first effort taking him past Ablitt and then Morley in Heat 15.

Manager Dave Howard said: “It was a tricky track to say the least, and there were quite a few falls during the meeting, and lots of re-started races.

“We had a run of two or three good races, we got nine points ahead, but then they pulled it back to three points with five races to go – but we turned it around again to get a 12-point victory and get the aggregate point.

“Another away win is just so vital now there’s only two teams going into the play-offs, and everybody put in a performance for us.

“Dan Thompson was in fantastic form for his paid maximum, Ashton and Max Perry both had some good races, and Max James again with three race wins gave us a great performance at reserve.

“Vinnie also got a paid win, and Josh guested and came in with a few points, so it’s a really good victory in what was a very tricky meeting with all the incidents that occurred – it’s great to get the three points to move us up the table.”

The Cubs are back in action on Saturday August 5 when they host Workington in the KO Cup before a crunch clash at Mildenhall the following day, with the hope being that Joe Thompson and Tom Spencer could be fit to resume for that weekend.

KENT 38: Ben Morley 11, Tom Woolley 10, Nathan Ablitt 9+2, Connor King 3+2, Ashton Vale (no.8) 2+1, Rhys Naylor 2, Sam Woolley 1+1, Jack Kingston r/r.
LEICESTER 50: Dan Thompson 17+1, Max James 10, Max Perry 9, Ashton Boughen 7, Josh Warren 4+1, Vinnie Foord 3+1, Joe Thompson r/r.

Next Home Meeting

Leicester Cubs V Scunthorpe Stags / Sheffield Prowlers
May 19, 2024

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