PREVIEW: Monarch Cheetahs target points from Plymouth Jubilee League trip

The Monarch Oxford Cheetahs resume their Jubilee League (South) campaign on the Devon coast this evening against Plymouth Gladiators at the Plymouth Coliseum, 7pm.

Cheetahs sit second in the southern group of British speedway’s newest competition, with four points secured from last week’s opening two fixtures against Birmingham Brummies.

It means victory on the road tonight would lift Jason Crump and Peter Schroeck’s men to the top of the four-team group, albeit Poole Pirates will have two meetings in hand.

Schroeck says there is no reason why the Monarch Cheetahs cannot target a third away win of the season and hopes to make up for a frustrating end to the club’s narrow defeat in the second city last week.

“We ended last week with mixed emotions,” said Schroeck. “The home win was fantastic, and the boys performed admirably on the road.

“But we knew a win (at Birmingham) was within our grasp and we just couldn’t get over the line. The Jubilee League is a ruthless format – one slip-up could seriously cost you when it comes to deciding the finalists.

“We’ve licked our wounds a bit from that result and moved on with a fresh mindset for this week’s double header against Plymouth. Plymouth have really held their own this season and the club’s home record speaks for itself.

“It’s a tight and technical track which can get some getting used to. But we saw at the weekend with the Chargers how riding with the correct mindset can help the team.

“Running as fewer last places possible is our goal. If we achieve that we’ll put ourselves in a good position.”

The Monarch Cheetahs will be without fans’ favourite Dillon Ruml and Jack Thomas for both meetings.

Ruml is on international duty with Team USA in the Speedway of Nations while Thomas is resting his wrists after experiencing swelling following his comeback meeting at Perry Barr last week.

Oxford-based Nathan Stoneman will guest in place of Ruml tonight with rider replacement is operated in Thomas’ absence.

“Dillon (Ruml) has been fantastic for us this season,” said Schroeck. “We wish him every success on the international stage and hope he can be part of a successful campaign for Team USA.

“It’s been a headache trying to find a replacement, but Nathan Stoneman was keen to fill in and we can never fault his commitment.

“Jack has experienced some swelling on his wrist since returning to the saddle. He is a rider with huge potential and rushing him back will only risk causing more serious long-term damage.”

Tapes-up at the Plymouth Coliseum for tonight’s Jubilee League fixture is at 7pm.