LAKESIDE have completed the signing of Kyle Newman for the 2018 SGB Championship campaign.
Newman joins the Hammers after spending last season with Ipswich, who reached the Finals of both League and KO Cup competitions, and he becomes the fourth signing at the Arena-Essex Raceway.
He said: “As soon as we found out I wasn’t at Ipswich, I always had Lakeside in the back of my head. I gave Jon (Cook) a call, and it was all pretty much sorted there and then. It didn’t take long to do the deal and I’m really looking forward to it.
“It’s always a track where I’ve gone well, so having that home track advantage should be nice, and the team is looking exciting.
“We’ve got some proven points scorers and a few guys with a point to prove like myself, so hopefully we can have a good season.”
BERWICK have handed comeback man David Howe a recall to Shielfield Park for next season.
Howe came out of retirement earlier this year and played a big part in the Bandits’ improved fortunes over the closing stages of the campaign.
Co-promoter Scott Courtney said: “We are buzzing to get the 2017 comeback king David Howe back as our third rider on the Bandits’ roster for the 2018 season.
“He wanted to be back, and made no secret of that fact, and we always want riders who desperately want to ride for us, and his loyalty is amazing!
“David became an instant hit on the terraces at Shielfield Park Stadium and recaptured his enthusiasm for the sport in abundance last season, and is keen as anything to make sure that continues in 2018 as he is determined to re-establish himself as a legitimate heat leader in the Championship.”
JOSH Bates has become the second member of Sheffield’s SGB Championship-winning team to be named in their line-up for next season.
Bates increased his average to 6.54 in a successful campaign on a personal level, and now joins Lasse Bjerre as a confirmed started in 2018.
He said: “Last season was amazing and it’s given me and everyone at Sheffield a taste for success.
“The Championship is looking really strong when you look around at the other teams, but we’re going to be strong too and we’ll take some beating.
“For me personally it’s nice to know I’m sorted in both the Championship and Premiership, doubling up again, I’m pleased about that.
“I’m working hard already to prepare for next season and I know it’s a big year for me.”
BEN Morley has joined the Isle of Wight as the club’s new No.1 for the 2018 National League campaign.
Morley rode for Lakeside this year and will continue to represent the Hammers for their move up to the SGB Championship – but he joins the Warriors on a 9.49 average as one of the third tier’s established top men.
Team manager Jackie Vatcher said: “The signing of Ben will probably surprise some people as the Island has not been one of his favourite tracks in the past, but when he guested for Mildenhall towards the end of last season, he rode the track the best we have seen him and won three of his five rides.
“When we heard that Lakeside were to move up to the Championship, we again spoke to Ben with the agreement of his parent club Rye House and to our delight it didn't take long to agree a deal.
“The whole National League knows what an outstanding rider he is in this division, and we hope this move, in addition to his rides for Lakeside, will help Ben become a more all-round rider in 2018.”
IPSWICH promoter Chris Louis says the continuity provided by their 2018 line-up was a conscious decision after the success of last season.
The Witches will bring back six of the seven riders who started at Foxhall in March, when despite an injury-hit campaign the Foxhall side still reached the SGB Championship and KO Cup Finals.
Louis said: “There are two parts to having the same team back - they respect each other and get on really well. Had we have had six or seven riders that were not getting on, it would have been pointless to bring them back as a unit.
“That wasn’t the case and we are building a bond and relationship with the fans and individual riders.
“Fans come to support Ipswich as a team, but they have always taken a shine to one or two riders and when those riders are not there the next year it is difficult to find that bond again.
“Those relationships are getting stronger now and that is what is missing in speedway these days. I am really excited for the fans, riders and sponsors that they are coming back and we are building on those relationships that were strong last year and will be even stronger next year.”