Wednesday April 25, 2018
PETERBOROUGH boss Carl Johnson has delivered a positive report on the club’s start to the 2018 season.

The T.Balfe Construction Panthers are still in contention for a semi-final place in the Championship Shield with a re-arranged home clash against Ipswich to come, and they also won their first league match against Redcar.

They are currently in a mini-break from action but return with trips to champions Sheffield and Edinburgh next week (Thursday and Friday) – before a busy schedule of home matches starting with the visit of Workington on Friday May 11.

Johnson said: “If people had said that in our first four meetings we’d be where we are then I would very much have taken that and to get an away win so soon, especially at Ipswich, is very pleasing.

“I do think we’re going to be run close at home in certain meetings this season, but I also think we’re going to be very good away from home.

“Lakeside was a bit of a trick-track for everyone and a few of our riders had never seen the place, so that was always going to be difficult, but there are tracks we’re going to which we like.

“We are capable of picking up not just three points, but four, at certain tracks so overall I’m very encouraged by what we’ve seen so far.

“Things are looking good but we’ll keep our feet on the ground and keep working hard. We know it’s a long season.”

Johnson has also praised second-year Panthers reserve Tom Bacon, who has shown plenty of progression in the early weeks of the campaign.

Bacon scored a vital five points in the away win at Ipswich before adding 5+2 against Redcar, including an impressive first lap to get the better of Danish brothers Jonas B and Mikkel B Andersen in Heat 7.

With a maximum for his National League club Birmingham at Stoke last weekend, it’s been a solid start to the season for the Coventry-based rider.

Johnson said: “You can see that Tom is getting that confidence, and it’s not just week by week, it’s race by race.

“I think the rules help this year in that you don’t have to use your lower-averaged reserve at No.7.

“I wanted to put Tom at No.6 which gives him an inside gate in his first heat, which is always good for an inexperienced rider, and he does like the inside gate.

“I think it works for him, and it’s showing – he got paid-seven against Redcar, and that’s fantastic for him and probably one of his best scores around Peterborough.”

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