Published: 00:00, 08 April 2019
Teenager Alex Spooner says Kent Kings should embrace their National League favourites tag.
Kings are the team to beat when the new speedway season starts this month and that suits highly-rated Spooner.
He said: “It’s looking like a very strong team.
“We are the favourites but we can’t take that as pressure, we must take that as a good thing and say that everyone, if anything, is a bit worried about us.
“We’ve got to use that against them.
“It’s nice to be favourites because they’re obviously already thinking about us.
“The first aim is not to lose at home. If you don’t lose at home, you’re always in a strong position.”
Spooner, 18, was named supporters’ rider-of-the-year after his efforts last season.
That’s boosted his confidence for the new campaign as he sets out to win the award again.
He said: “Once I heard about that award, it was one of my goals to try and make sure I got it.
“It shows the hard work pays off and it’s made me more driven for this year because I just want to be the best again and make sure I get it for a second time.
“After last year I’ve got more confidence and this is going to be the next step where I’m hopefully going to push myself mid-season for a Championship guest spot, which is the next league up.
“There is an element of skill to speedway but the more you believe, the more confidence you carry and you naturally ride better.
“If you’re not mentally prepared for it or not feeling confident then you’re not going to ride confident and that’s when you make mistakes because you’re not concentrating as much.”
Spooner has secured sponsorship from Sittingbourne company CMF Carpentry & Trade Services.
Their owner, Chris Feliniak, appeared on DIY SOS two years ago when a Sheppey bungalow was pulled down and rebuilt in just nine days.
Spooner said: “I’ve met Chris a couple of times and he’s an absolutely lovely man and I’m very grateful to have him on board.
“I’ve also got to thank Dan Wood and Adam Bull, two of Chris’ mates who have very kindly helped out with him. They’ve all been so nice to me.”