Thursday July 06, 2023
KING’S Lynn suffered more pain at the hands of Sheffield with a 33-57 defeat at the Adrian Flux Arena on Thursday.

The Tigers again showed their liking for the venue and the MacInnes Stars will be relived that this was their third and final visit of the season.

The major positive for the Stars was a superb battling display from recent signing Simon Lambert who thoroughly deserved his paid-13 score, whilst Artem Laguta won two races and was denied a third with a clutch issue.

Thomas Jorgensen also battled hard and finished off with a win, but it was a night to forget for skipper Nicolai Klindt after his recent high-scoring home displays, and the Stars continue to be hit hard by the injury absence of Michael Palm Toft.

Stars again found themselves chasing from the off, and although it was nowhere near as disastrous as the Tigers’ previous visit, the gap was still ten points after five races, largely down to Sheffield 5-1s in Heats 2 and 5 with the latter seeing Lewis Kerr hold off Jorgensen to team up with Jack Holder who once again proved unbeatable.

Lambert took the scalp of Polish star Tobiasz Musielak with a brilliant ride in Heat 4, and Laguta won back-to-back races in Heats 6 and 7, the second when racing as a tactical substitute.

Kerr was disqualified from Heat 8 for a second offence of movement at the start, but this was little concern for the Tigers as reserve Kyle Howarth was in good form, and he duly came in as replacement and won the race.

Howarth then combined with Musielak for a 5-1 over Jorgensen in Heat 9, and the points were in the bag for the visitors with a fortunate 5-1 in Heat 10 when Laguta led Josh Pickering and Adam Ellis only to begin to slow on the third lap with both visitors going through.

Holder surged inside the faster-starting Lambert and Klindt to notch his third win in Heat 11, whilst Lambert showed his determination to split Ellis and Howarth in the next.

Sheffield went through the 50-point mark with a 5-1 in Heat 13 from Holder and Musielak before their reserve Dan Gilkes suffered an awkward fall in Heat 14 when he lifted off turn four, with Jorgensen showing quick reactions to lay his machine down and prevent a more serious accident.

The Dane then showed great character despite being in real pain to win the re-run ahead of Pickering, although the former Stars skipper had the final say in Heat 15 whilst Lambert rounded off his night by overcoming Kerr for second place.

Manager David Hoggart said: “You can’t take anything away from Sheffield at all. They are a fabulous side, and in all honesty they are probably the envy of the league in terms of the strength in depth they’ve got.

“In terms of our team, what you saw from Simon is what you get every time he races and he finished up with double figures – he never stops trying.

“Nicolai is as disappointed as anyone with his performance and Artem had machinery problems, his clutch burnt out on one bike and when he went out on his other bike it was like he was riding a push-bike around there, so I couldn’t really put him in Heat 15.

“It would be fair to say that we’ve talked about who we could potentially bring into the side - obviously we’ve got Michael injured at the moment and it would help with consistency if we could bring someone in, so if his season is done, we need to know.

“We’re conscious of the frustrations – it’s new to me, but I’m still frustrated!”

The Stars are back in action at the Adrian Flux Arena when they host Peterborough on Monday (July 10). This is not a live televised fixture.

KING’S LYNN 33: Simon Lambert 12+1, Artem Laguta 10, Thomas Jorgensen 7, Andrews Rowe 2, Ben Barker 1+1, Nicolai Klindt 1+1, Kye Thomson 0.
SHEFFIELD 57: Jack Holder 12, Kyle Howarth 11+1, Adam Ellis 10+1, Josh Pickering 9+1, Tobiasz Musielak 8+2, Adam Ellis 10+1, Lewis Kerr 4+1, Dan Gilkes 3+2.

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