Peterborough Panthers boss admits it was a tough call to sack a club legend

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Peterborough Panthers team boss Rob Lyon admits sacking club captain and legend Hans Andersen was one of the toughest calls he’s ever made.

Andersen was informed of the club's decision in a telephone call from Lyon on Saturday morning.

​It was a sad end for a bona fide Panthers legend who had admittedly failed to fire in the Premiership this season.

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His reserve berth has been taken by Patryk Wojdylo, who made his debut in British Speedway in Monday’s heavy Premiership defeat at home to Wolverhampton.

Hans Andersen. Photo: David LowndesHans Andersen. Photo: David Lowndes
Hans Andersen. Photo: David Lowndes

Panthers team boss Rob Lyon was disappointed in how it finished for Andersen, but insisted it was the right call and the Great Dane has already moved on to Championship club Berwick.

Lyon said: “It’s sad it’s got to end like this, but you have to do what’s right for the team and he’s been struggling all year which has not been nice to see, especially after all that he’s achieved in the sport and especially for Peterborough.

“That’s what I said to him when I called him around 10.30 on Saturday morning.

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“Obviously we have been contemplating what to do with the team for a while, but it’s one of the hardest calls I’ve had to make, and I’ve made a few.

"But you have to put that to one side when you are trying to think about the team.

“My impression over the phone was he was a little bit shocked and surprised. He took it okay, but I don’t think he thought anything like that would happen, although I might be wrong.

“I also got the impression he wanted to see if he can stay racing in this country and I did say if he wanted me to try and help facilitate a move somewhere else I would do it.

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“I knew a couple of clubs in the Championship had expressed an interest and I said I’d help him in any way to get another ride.

“In 2021 he was an integral part of ‘Dad’s Army’, the team that won the Premiership. They all did a great job and he was integral to the whole culture of the team.

"He was the life and soul of the party. Scott Nicholls was captain, but Hans played that role as well. He was good for team spirit and he was an inspirational figure in the pits while enjoying his speedway and I know he loves Peterborough.

“He was a such a big part of that team and as soon as I knew he wanted to come back last year, I knew I wanted him in the team again.

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"When I first took over as team manager at Peterborough in 2021, I had a feeling he was a much better rider than what he had been the year before and that proved to be the case.

“It’s hard to say if it’s the end of a career, but Hans is 43 in November.

"During the winter he spoke about having one more year after this and I would say he will probably make that call at the end of this season, but you never know.

"I don’t know what he will do if he is still enjoying it, scoring points and making some money. Was he enjoying it? I’m sure he wasn’t, he couldn’t have been, the way things were going.

“It's very hard to know with riders, usually they have that psychological battle about when it is the right time to finish.

"Some know, but I don’t think all of them do.”