Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Hammers Aim To Prey On Eagles

The Lakeside Hammers, in proud association with The Royal Navy, go into this coming Friday’s Sky Sports Elite League match at the Arena-Essex Raceway against local rivals, the Eastbourne Eagles, fully aware that their opponents are very capable of making things difficult for them on the track.

The Eagles include in their side two riders who rode for the Essex based Club in recent seasons. Joonas Kylmakorpi was a member of last season’s Hammers side whereas Ricky Kling left the Hammers prior to the start of last season to ride for the Eagles. However, the Hammers riders will be well aware that it will not only be these two former Hammers riders that could be a threat to them continuing their unbeaten home run in the Elite League.

The Eagles No.1 this year is Matej Zagar and many will remember his performances around the Arena-Essex Raceway last season when he rode for the Swindon Robins. In addition their Australian captain, Cameron Woodward, and young Swedish ride, Simon Gustafsson, have both, in the past, put in some impressive performances at the Hammers Raceway. The Eastbourne side also includes Lukas Dryml from the Czech Republic and young Polish rider Dawid Lampart. The Pole has yet to race at the Arena-Essex Raceway having turned up too late to take part in his first programmed ride in the Good Friday meeting between the two clubs that had to be called off due to the weather after just two heats. Dryml has, in the past, made it clear that he doesn’t rate the Hammers track as one of his favourites but last season did put in a couple of good rides.

The Hammers are looking to go into this meeting at full strength with reserve, Paul Hurry, hoping to return to the side following the injury he sustained in the home match against Poole resulting in him having to miss the last two home matches, against Wolverhampton and Peterborough.

The Hammers Co Promoter and Team Manager, Jon Cook, stated in the build up to this important meeting: “We certainly won’t be taking it for granted that we will achieve another home win this Friday against the Eagles as they have a team that are very capable of pushing us the whole way. They have riders who have, in the past, performed well around our Raceway and no more so that Joonas (Kylmakorpi) and Ricky (Kling) who have successfully worn the Hammers colour in the past. Although we have seen off Poole, Wolves and Peterborough in our last three home meetings I think that we will be in for a tough match on Friday but I firmly believe that we can continue our good run of home League wins but all of the Hammers team will need to be in the form they have shown recently. We can’t afford any last places and we must ensure that we get the majority of heat winners. Providing things go to plan Paul (Hurry) should be back for this meeting and we need him to continue where he left off prior to having been the innocent party in a crash in his final ride in the Poole match.”

The action gets underway at the Arena-Essex Raceway this Friday, 4th June, at 8pm with the parade of riders scheduled for 7.45pm. The weather forecast is looking very good and should be a far cry from that the fans from both sides witnessed on Good Friday.


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