Speedway- Lakeside co-promoter Jon Cook heaped praise on his side after they edged a 46-43 away win at Kent on Monday.
The Hammers continued their encouraging start to life at National League level with a hard-fought victory over the Kings in the first leg of their Tunnel Trophy tie.
Top two Ben Morley and Zach Wajtknecht both starred but it was a superb all-around team effort from the Purfleet outfit.
They will now carry a narrow lead into the second leg at the Arena-Essex Raceway on Friday (8pm) – and Cook has been delighted with a positive start to their new era.
Said Cook: “It was lovely to get an away win so early in the season, and it was a great effort from the team.
“It was a real team effort from the six riders, and it’ll hopefully be a feature of the season that Ben Morley and Zach Wajtknecht can get the job done in the big heats at the end.
“Alfie Bowtell in particular has been impressive and a bit of an unsung hero in our first three fixtures, but I think we’ve got off to a really positive start.
“Obviously Kent will come to our place wanting to turn us over on Friday, but we’re looking forward to an exciting match.
“In the meantime we can bask in the glory of a great away win and hopefully take that momentum into the second leg.”
KENT 43: Luke Bowen 15, Ben Hopwood 9+1, Luke Clifton 6+1, Jack Thomas 6+1, Alex Spooner 3+1, Bradley Andrews 3, Nathan Stoneman 1.
LAKESIDE 46: Zach Wajtknecht 12, Ben Morley 10+2, Alfie Bowtell 8+1, David Mason 8, Jamie Couzins 6+3, Nick Laurence 2, George Hunter r/r.