Speedway: All change again for Panthers on their long weekend away

Panthers star Lewis Blackbird hasn't recovered from injury in time to travel to Workington and Glasgow. Photo: David Lowndes.
Panthers star Lewis Blackbird hasn't recovered from injury in time to travel to Workington and Glasgow. Photo: David Lowndes.
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Peterborough Panthers face the prospect of two weekend away dates with three riders missing.

The city club saw star reserve Simon Lambert sidelined with a broken shoulder blade earlier this week and have been dealt further blows by the loss of two other members of their team for the Premier League visits to Workington tomorrow (July 25, 7pm) and Glasgow on Sunday (July 26, 3pm).

Teenage talent Robert Lambert and Lewis Blackbird had been expected to return for the Northern tour, but have now been ruled out. The youngster aggravated a hip problem when making his comeback from a fortnight out injured for King’s Lynn in the Elite League on Wednesday while Blackbird’s treatment for tissue damage in his back has not gone as well as hoped.

But Panthers bosses again appear to have used the guest system shrewdly though.

They have drafted in Somerset star Josh Grajczonek for Workington clash in place of Robert Lambert with the rider replacement facility covering the absence of Blackbird. Aussie Grajczonek is a former Workington rider and in fine form currently.

The following day at Glasgow, Redcar man Matej Kus steps in for Blackbird with rider replacement also in operation again.

Czech ace Kus racked up 13 points when guesting for Panthers as they suffered their first away league defeat at lowly Scunthorpe recently.

Panthers have also confirmed the bookings of Ashley Morris (Saturday) and Matt Wethers (Sunday) to replace Simon Lambert at reserve. Wethers will ride for the club less then 24 hours after riding against them for his regular side, Workington.

Promoter Ged Rathbone said: “I keep convincing myself that our luck is bound to change sooner or later, but it is not showing any sign of happening currently.

“It is hard enough to have one rider out – as we have found for much of the season – but to be without three makes life really difficult.

“We did win at Berwick the other week with three riders missing though so we know we are still capable of picking up results.

“We have managed to pick up some very capable guests and we are hoping to get something out of the weekend.”

Workington boast a 100 per cent league record at their big Derwent Park base while Glasgow have hopped above Panthers into second spot in the Premier League standings.

But Panthers remain odds-on to secure a play-off spot as they sit just three points behind table-topping reigning champions Edinburgh.