King's Lynn Stars boss: "Ipswich adapted a little bit quicker, especially from the gate"
King’s Lynn Stars team boss Peter Schroeck admitted his side were caught out at the gate in losing their 2021 curtain-raiser to derby rivals Ipswich Witches on Monday, writes Peter Woodhouse.
The first half of the speedway meeting chiefly saw a procession of yellow and white helmeted riders surge out from the tapes and make the first corners ahead of Lynn in their red and blue helmets.
Schroeck said: “A lot of people forget. It’s very easy to say, like: ‘Oh well, we lost,’ and this and that, but at the end of the day we haven’t raced for 20 months, near enough.
“For everybody it’s the same and Ipswich adapted a little bit quicker, especially from the gate.
“This is where they sort of caught us out. We’ve done a few twitches and a few things on the bikes. A couple of people made a few changes and we’ve turned it around respectively.
“I think overall it was quite a positive night even though we lost. But it was the first meeting; there are plenty of meetings to come yet, so overall I’m quite confident.
“When you go out there the track felt a bit daunting, and one thing or another. A lot of the guys, it takes them a little bit longer to get into the right mindset, you know?”
Lynn’s three successive maximums at the end, which were boosted by hat-trick winner Craig Cook and late-blooming partner Erik Riss, plus dashing early double-winning Dane Thomas Jorgensen were positives, Schroeck commented.
“At the end of the day Cookie and Erik had great racing and Thomas was on fire,” he added.
“People say: Oh, he should’ve been in Heat 15 but we’re a team. I need three heat leaders who are going to fire all the time and I’ve got two guys who are struggling a bit, but came good at the end.
“I think they deserved to have a go because that’s what sets you up for the next meeting.
“Thomas understands that; all the others do, so overall I think we’ve got a very good squad and it shows you how quick your luck can change.
“We worked our way back. Lewis (Kerr) had a puncture in one of the races where we were on a 5-1 (Heat 9) so it could have been even closer. I’m really pleased how they got themselves back.”
Reserves arguably made the difference on the night with Anders Rowe (paid 14 points) starring for the Witches and Lynn’s mainly struggling.
Schroeck said: “Lewis (Bridger) hasn’t been riding for five years and to go out the way he does when he’s just had a little bit of practice in, it just shows you what the guy’s capable of and he’s only going to get better each time.
“Ryan (Kinsley), for him it’s all new. Some of their guys like Anders Rowe and Drew Kemp, they’re all in Team GB doing all these sorts of things. Ryan, he’s still grinding his teeth a little bit. We’ve got to support him.”