Speedway GP star Robert Lambert insists the pressure is on Sheffield after roaring to a 15-point maximum for Belle Vue as they claimed a 51-39 lead over the Tigers in the SGB Premiership Grand Final on Monday.

The Great Britain hero went unbeaten for a second straight Aces meeting as he continues his stellar end-of-season cameo appearance, replacing the injured Max Fricke for the play-offs.

Lambert was well supported by 10 paid 13 points from skipper Brady Kurtz, while Slovenian star Matej Zagar tallied a straight 10.

Polish star Tobiasz Musielak led the Tigers scorechart on eight paid nine, while 2021 British champion Adam Ellis registered eight. No.1 Jack Holder managed two points on a difficult night in Manchester.

Sheffield must now overturn a 12-point deficit if they are to win their first-ever top-flight title and deny Belle Vue their first since 1993.

Lambert was delighted with his own performance and a solid team display that puts Aces in with a great chance of ending this 29-year wait.

He said: “The last two meetings couldn’t have gone much better. It has been pretty good and it’s nice to be here with such a great team. There is a great atmosphere and the boys have been working very hard all season for this moment.

“It’s better to be 12 points up and they are under pressure now to get those points back. We need to go there, fight strong early on and go do the job.”

Sheffield boss Simon Stead believes the tie is still very much in the balance as the sides head back to Owlerton. He said: “It’s half time, all to play for. It’s not a disaster by any stretch. I think we’ve been dealt a rough hand in a couple of heats but it’s 12 points. I think it sets up the final at Sheffield on Thursday really nicely.”

Aces’ night was marred by heavy crashes for former British champion Charles Wright and Australian reserve Jye Etheridge, with both now potentially doubts to feature in Thursday’s second leg.

Etheridge fell awkwardly in a tight first turn in heat four, before Wright was sucked into the fourth-bend fence as he hunted down Musielak in heat nine. Lemon now looks set to check on their fitness ahead of the Sheffield decider.

Photo: Taylor Lanning