LEICESTER have unveiled their full team to defend the National Development League title next season.

The Lion Cubs swept to a league and KO Cup double in 2022, as well as winning the NDL Pairs, and with progression of youngsters being the key, they are delighted to have been able to retain the majority of the side which served them so well this year.

Another youthful line-up is once again led by skipper Joe Thompson (18) whilst his twin brother Dan is also back to take the No.1 riding position.

Dan will also step up to the Premiership next year as Rising Star for the Watling JCB Lions but has so far missed out on a Championship team place, having achieved an average of 5.22 at that level this year.
Joe, meanwhile, will race for Scunthorpe in the second tier.

Elsewhere in the Lion Cubs’ side, there are returns for Max Perry (15) who enjoyed such a successful first season in the NDL, Vinnie Foord (16) who made spectacular progress in 2022, and Tom Spencer (22), who provided real consistency in a second-string berth.

Stepping up into the team is former club mascot Max James (15) who served notice of his potential with some impressive displays as No.8 in the closing stages of the season.

And as the only completely new face in the side, Leicester are delighted to have secured the signing of another highly talented 15-year-old, Ashton Boughen.

The motocross graduate only took up speedway back in May and raced against the Cubs for Oxford and Mildenhall in the play-offs, where he made a remarkable early impression.

Boughen’s first appearance at the Paul Chapman & Sons Arena saw him win two races, defeat Cubs heat-leader Connor Coles and he led Joe Thompson until the last lap of Heat 11.

The initial make-of the team will see Boughen start in the top five, having achieved an average from four matches this year, whilst Foord and James will be at reserve.

Cubs boss Dave Howard said: “After our 'Treble' success in 2022 and the team spirit and togetherness that was such a big feature of the team, it is great to have Dan, Joe, Max Perry, Tom and Vinnie back lining up for the Lion Cubs in 2023.

“Max James showed us the great talent he has in his first NDL rides in the league and KO Cup Finals, and we saw ourselves the talent and potential that Ashton has with his scores in his meetings against us this year for Oxford and Mildenhall.

“So I am delighted with our Lion Cubs seven for 2023, when we will be giving everything we have to be challenging hard for silverware once again.”

Leicester would also like to place on record their thanks to the two members of this year’s team who are not returning to the Lion Cubs in 2023.

Both Connor Coles and Mickie Simpson played a big part in a hugely successful campaign, and we wish them all the best for their racing next season.

LION CUBS 2023: Dan Thompson 9.73, Joe Thompson (c) 9.11, Max Perry 5.67, Tom Spencer 5.26, Ashton Boughen 4.95, Vinnie Foord 3.85, Max James 3.00.

*LEICESTER can also confirm admission prices for NDL matches in 2023, as follows:
Adults £14
Concessions £12
Children (16 and under) £1
Lions season ticket holders £5

Next Home Meeting

Leicester Lions V Oxford Spires
May 27, 2024

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