JAMES Shanes has made a public apology to Swindon Robins supporters, and hopes his personal performances will improve once radiotherapy on a torn thumb starts this week.

The Dorchester-based racer, who is one of three new faces to Alun Rossiter’s side this season, has torn two cruciate ligaments either side of his thumb.

Points have been hard to come by for the 22-year-old so far this season, but he has promised to give everything possible against King’s Lynn Stars at the Norfolk Arena this evening – a track he has completed plenty of laps on previously with the Poultec Training School.

Shanes said: “The injury to my thumb is painful. But we have to soldier on.

“Hopefully when it heals, I won’t get so much grief when I’m riding.

“I can only apologise to the fans that I haven’t started the season as well as I would’ve wanted to.

“But I hope they stick by me so I can show what I want to do.”

The Robins enter tonight’s Supporters’ Cup meeting with a three-point lead in the Southern Group over second-placed Ipswich Witches.

King’s Lynn sit six points shy of Rossiter’s septet, while Poole have just two points and trail the Robins by seven.

Victory this evening will go a long way in helping the Robins secure a spot in the Supporters’ Cup Final against the winner of the Northern Group.

And a 48-42 loss at Ipswich on a grippy track encouraged Shanes, who enjoyed a rare weekend off to allow his thumb to heal.

He added: “Thursday at Ipswich was patchy, but I’m slowly getting there.

“Hopefully I can start scoring some points. I’ve done plenty up laps around King’s Lynn, but that’s with the Poultec Training School so it’s a different capacity to racing.

“We’ll go there the same as every meeting, I’ll give it everything I possibly can.

“I’ve had a rare couple of days off over the weekend for my fiancée’s 21st birthday. My thumb should be a bit closer to healed as a result of that, and I’m starting radiotherapy next week to try and get that sorted.”