NEXT ACTION: BELLE VUE ACES v VOLVO CARS POOLE PIRATES - KO CUP 2ND LEG
The Volvo Cars Poole Pirates have a long trek north on Friday and once they get there they will still have a mountain to climb if they are to progress into the semi-final stages of the re-introduced top flight KO Cup.
With just two points to defend the Pirates have left themselves little room for error but they will go into the meeting believing that they tie is far from over. "There is no reason why we can't go up there and put in a performance like they (the Aces) did at our place" admitted skipper Hans Andersen post Wednesday night's meeting which saw Poole just claiming victory after a heat 15 heat deficit was turned into Poole's favour when Kenneth Bjerre suffered mechanical problems whilst leading.
Pirates' promoter Matt Ford would have liked to have seen the Pirates holding a lead of a greater magnitude, "ideally we wanted a double figure advantage to really put the pressure on them but now we will just have to be fully on our game. It is a very good racing strip they have at the new National Stadium and our lads just have to go out there and race it. It is certainly going to be a great deal tougher than we would have liked but the tie is there to be won and whilst that is the case then we have to believe we are still in with a chance."
The Pirates will be operating rider replacement for the absent Lewis Kerr who has a prior booking with his SGB Championship side Scunthorpe, as he faces the even longer journey to Edinburgh. His absence will mean extra duties for Jack Holder and reserves Nicolai Klindt and James Shanes and with just six riders on show it means there is no room for passengers.
The Aces, who will be launching their 2017 home campaign will be unchanged from the outfit that gave Poole something of a lesson in gating on Wednesday.
Belle Vue: Kenneth Bjerre, Craig Cook (Capt), Max Fricke, Justin Sedgmen, Steven Worrall, Dan Bewley, Jack Smith Team manager: Mark Lemon
Poole: Hans Andersen (Capt), Jack Holder, Krzysztof Kasprzak, Rider replacement for Lewis Kerr, Brady Kurtz, Nicolai Klindt, James Shanes Team manager Neil Middleditch
Final Standings (champions to be determined via play-offs)