Top rider Tom says King’s Lynn Young Stars can stoke up success

King's Lynn Young Stars Speedway Press and Practice Day at The Norfolk Arena, Saddlebow.

Tom Stokes in action ANL-160330-172629009
King's Lynn Young Stars Speedway Press and Practice Day at The Norfolk Arena, Saddlebow. Tom Stokes in action ANL-160330-172629009
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Number one rider Tom Stokes says competition among the King’s Lynn Young Stars one-to-seven is healthy.

Despite not being highly-rated by sections of the speedway world, the team is confident they can achieve success in the National League season which begins next week.

King's Lynn Young Stars Speedway Press and Practice Day at The Norfolk Arena, Saddlebow.
Team Group
Back LtoR, Nathan Greaves, Tom Stokes, Layne Cupitt, Dale Allitt, Shane Hazelden, Ryan Kinsley, Lewis Whitmore

Front LtoR, Danny Curl (Mascot), Scott Campos, Josh Bailey. ANL-160330-172850009

King's Lynn Young Stars Speedway Press and Practice Day at The Norfolk Arena, Saddlebow. Team Group Back LtoR, Nathan Greaves, Tom Stokes, Layne Cupitt, Dale Allitt, Shane Hazelden, Ryan Kinsley, Lewis Whitmore Front LtoR, Danny Curl (Mascot), Scott Campos, Josh Bailey. ANL-160330-172850009

Stokes commented at the team’s Press and Practice Day on Wednesday: “Yes, any of these riders can take my number one spot off me , definitely. I think we’re all capable.

“I think that’s good, because everyone will be riding well, I suppose.”

League officials and correspondents were quizzed by Speedway Star magazine and on average only rated Lynn to finish seventh and fifth respectively out of 12 teams.

Reserve rider Ryan Kinsley says a top four play-off spot is achievable: “Definitely. We all have a laugh and we’ve all got a good team spirit going.

“We all get along and we all know how to ride with each other. If we get bad comments we can just turn around and show what we can do.”

On a personal note, he added: “I ended last season on a high, so I’m ready to go again, put points on the average and keep going.”

Norwich-born Josh Bailey said of his first Premier League experience with Scunthorpe: “I think it will be good.

“Coming into this, I’ve already had three meetings, so I’m already fresh and ready to go, and from that I’ve learned quite a lot.”

Also on a fast learning curve is Layne Cupitt who has just been on a winter training stint in Australia under the guidance of current world champion Tai Woffinden.

The 18-year-old said: “Tai was with me every time I was there riding.”

Asked if it has it benefited him as a rider, he replied: “We’ll find out – I don’t know.

“I think I’ve got a bit more confidence, not just in my riding, but in myself.”

Shane Hazelden made a comeback last season after time out from the sport, and is raring to go.

Hazelden, who put two nearly points on his average in 2015, added: “Having a year out did me a world of good.

“I didn’t actually know if I’d continue riding or not. I enjoyed myself last season and I’ve invested in new equipment. Things are in the right places.”

Nathan Greaves, Bailey and Kinsley will take part in the British U21 Semi-Final at Kent on Monday. A top ten finish out of 16 will qualify for the final at Sheffield 10 days later.

Lynn Stars’ Robert Lambert is seeded to the final.