Cook loving life in the Showground fast lane

Craig Cook insists he is loving life as Panthers' number one.

Thursday, 16th June 2016, 10:38 am
Updated Thursday, 16th June 2016, 1:02 pm
Craig Cook leads the way in heat 10 against Glasgow. Picture: David Lowndes

The top British talent has piled up 37 points in three appearances since being drafted in by the city club last month.

He delivered his biggest contribution to date last Friday when a 14-point haul helped Panthers beat fellow Premier League title hopefuls Glasgow 50-40 at the East of England Showground to extend their winning run to five meetings in all competitions.

And Cook (29) is adamant he can already feel the benefits of returning to a club which gave him his first taste of Elite League speedway with a handful of appearances back in 2010.

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Cook said: “I spent five years riding on tight tracks at the old Belle Vue in the Elite League and at Edinburgh in the Premier League.

“It is absolutely fantastic to now be at a big, fast place like the East of England Showground and I’m loving every minute of it. I can feel that it is already helping me progress as a rider and enhancing my ability to race.

“It is a privilege to ride in front of the Peterborough fans again after the club gave me the opportunity of having a few meetings in the Elite League a few years ago.

“I’m learning about my machinery all the time after going through the last few years by using the same equipment and set-ups everywhere.

“My riding ability has got me so far in this sport, but now it is time to take another step forward and I feel I’m starting to do that.”

And Cook hopes his return to top form will be enough to earn a place in the Great Britain side for the annual World Cup.

The GB side are seeded straight into the final as hosts with the event taking place at the National Speedway Stadium in Manchester – Cook’s home track for Belle Vue in the top flight - on July 30.

But competition for places in boss Alun ‘Rosco’ Rossiter’s quartet appears to be tough with world champion Tai Woffinden a certainty and Danny King highly likely to get the nod as British champion.

“Being in the Great Britain team is something I want badly,” Cook added. “I know I’m a good enough rider and hopefully I can do enough to impress Rosco.

“I don’t envy his job one bit, though. He’s got some tough decisions to make with the World Cup coming up because there are so many of the British guys riding really well at the moment.”