Peterborough lost a third rider to injury in as many days when falling to SGB Championship defeat at Berwick last night (Saturday).
Simon Lambert crashed out of a 50-40 SGB Championship reverse for the ‘T Balfe Construction’ Panthers at Shielfield Park.
Lambert was involved in a heat 10 tangle with Bandits rider Jye Etheridge which led to both men withdrawing from the meeting.
Initial fears are that Lambert suffered a broken left hand and he is due to go to hospital this morning for checks, while Etheridge sustained a shoulder injury.
It means Lambert is likely to join a casualty list which already features Kenneth Hansen and Bradley Wilson-Dean, who were both hurt in Thursday spills while riding for other clubs.
Peterborough team boss Carl Johnson said: “We’re going through a very tough time with injuries at the moment.
“Simon’s hand swelled up straight away and he’ll have an x-ray today, but it doesn’t look too good.
“It’s a real shame to lose him – not just because we’ve got Kenneth and Bradley out at the moment, but also because he looked back on song in his first three rides.
“It was just one of those racing incidents where two riders get hooked up in the first corner, and both Simon and Jye took heavy falls.”
Peterborough travelled to Berwick with a team featuring two guests and also using the rider replacement facility.
That didn’t stop them from putting in an encouraging performance for two-thirds of the clash, but bottom side Berwick took command late on following the exit of Lambert.
Panthers hit the front thanks to a 5-1 from guest number one Lasse Bjerre and Lambert in heat five before doubling their lead to four points when top-scorer Paul Starke inspired a 4-2 in heat eight.
A Berwick 5-1 in the next brought the sides level and that proved to be the first of five advantages for the hosts in the final seven races as they eased to victory.
Johnson added: “We did well for much of the meeting, but losing a rider to injury when already running R/R puts a real strain on the remaining guys.
“It’s always disappointing to be beaten, but everyone gave their all on a difficult night and we’ll do the same at Newcastle today.
“I must give special praise to Ash Morris for stepping in at pretty short notice to guest at reserve and then having to take seven rides.
“He was out four times in five races towards the end of the meeting, but he’s a great lad who just got on with it and battled for every point he picked up.”
Morris scored 6+2 – a tally matched by Lambert before his withdrawal. Paul Starke led the way for Peterborough with 11+1 while Bjerre and captain Ulrich Ostergaard also contributed solidly.
It was a night to forget for Tom Bacon, who was left with a costly repair bill after blowing two engines.
BERWICK: Nick Morris 14, Dany Gappmaier 13+1, Kevin Doolan 7+1, David Howe 7, Lewis Bridger 4, Jye Etheridge 3+1 (withdrawn), Lee Payne 2.
PETERBOROUGH ‘T BALFE CONSTRUCTION’ PANTHERS: Paul Starke 11+1, Lasse Bjerre (guest) 9, Ulrich Ostergaard 8, Simon Lambert 6+2 (withdrawn), Ashley Morris (guest) 6+2, Tom Bacon 0, Rider replacement for Kenneth Hansen.
* PETERBOROUGH will track another patched-up side when they travel to Newcastle tonight (Sunday).
They will call on the services of three guests for the visit to Brough Park (6.30pm) and also operate rider replacement again.
Lasse Bjerre continues to fill in at number one for Jack Holder, whose World Under 21 Championship qualifier in Italy now takes place today after being postponed yesterday.
Dany Gappmaier, who impressed for Berwick last night, will cover for Simon Lambert while Sheffield man Rob Branford steps in at reserve for Bradley Wilson-Dean. It’s R/R for Kenneth Hansen again.
NEWCASTLE: Connor Coles, Ben Hopwood, Robert Lambert, Ludvig Lindgren, Ash Morris, Lewis Rose, Steve Worrall.
PETERBOROUGH ‘T BALFE CONSTRUCTION’ PANTHERS: Tom Bacon, Lasse Bjerre (guest), Rob Branford (guest), Dany Gappmaier (guest), Rider replacement for Kenneth Hansen, Ulrich Ostergaard, Paul Starke.