Simon Stead says Ricky Wells deserves his big moment representing Sheffield in the Premier League Riders’ Championship later this month.
And the injured skipper has revealed his heartache at missing out on the showpiece event on the individual calendar at Owlerton on Sunday, September 22.
Stead is making good progress after suffering a badly broken leg in July but won’t be back on a bike until next season.
Wells, however, has been a shining light in Sheffield’s injury-ravaged season.
Said Stead: “The real positive for us has been the form of Ricky, who has started to show exactly what he is capable of.
“His reward is a place in the Premier League Riders Championship and he deserves it.
“Ricky has been riding brilliantly and it’s good for him and Sheffield fans that he lines up in that meeting.
“I’m gutted to miss it. I’d have been pretty confident going into it but obviously I won’t be riding, but I’m in a good place with the injury now.
“My surgeon is happy with the progress I’m making and I no longer need crutches, I’m walking without a support at the moment but I can’t do anything high impact yet.
“I’m sticking to flip-flops at the moment because the ankle is still pretty swollen so I’m hoping the hot weather sticks around!”
Tigers wrap up their Premier League campaign at Owlerton tomorrow when they face Somerset.
The Rebels include Jason Doyle, who was included in the Australian World Cup side in the summer, and fellow countrymen Josh Grajczonek and Nick Morris who are riding regularly in the Elite League.
Tigers are currently working on a guest replacement for Stead and should know today – Oliver Greenwood could replace the injured Simon Lambert at reserve.