SPEEDWAY Riders’ Benevolent Fund secretary Paul Ackroyd has thanked all supporters who have given to the cause over the last year.
Ackroyd said: “Once again the fans have been very supportive and I want to say thanks to everyone who has donated via track collections, online contributions and in particular some very generous fans who give us money on a monthly basis.
“There are other fundraising activities and recently there was a collection at Dave Rattenberry’s Funeral which raised over £700 for the SRBF, which was gratefully received.
“I realise that at this time of year people are awaiting the announcement of the venue and date for the next Ben Fund Bonanza, which in 2018 will be the tenth staging. We will be making the announcement of this early in the New Year.”
EASTBOURNE have signef Mark Baseby for a second season with the club.
Baseby will return to Arlington as No.1 and captain after an impressive run this year was curtailed by a broken arm.
He heads up a side with an average age of 21 as the Eagles go for the National League title after several near-misses in recent years.
Manager Connor Dugard said: “There’s plenty of improvement to come in that team. That’s how you get success in speedway. Selecting riders who can increase their average is the key.”
ADAM Roynon will be back with Plymouth after a successful stint with the Devils in 2017.
Roynon was voted the club’s Rider of the Year after switching to the St Boniface Arena in mid-season, and he returns to the Devon club on a 9.67 average.
Co-promoter Mark Phillips said: “It’s great to have a good solid No.1 who can lead by example.
“This league is about developing talent and the experience Adam has gained during his career makes him an ideal role model for next season.”
THE Isle of Wight have signed Danno Verge as the sixth member of their line-up for 2018.
Verge joins the Warriors after spells with Kent and Mildenhall over recent seasons, with rider and club hoping he will reap the benefits of racing at the big Smallbrook circuit.
Co-promoter Barry Bishop said: “Danno is starting to come of age now and a move to a larger track will do him and the club the world of good.
“Danno has maintained his average over the last two seasons and impressed us at the GB Young Lions camp held on the Island last February. He is another team player, which is important to help us maintain the direction of the club.
“This season, surrounded by our support, we hope Danno will grow in confidence and show the speedway world what he can do.”
NEWLY-crowned Queensland State Champion Jake Allen will remain with Somerset in the SGB Premiership next year.
Allen will be going into his third season at the Oaktree Arena, having followed the club in their elevation to the top-flight last winter, and he subsequently gained a Championship place with Scunthorpe.
Rebels boss Garry May said: “I think Jake suffered somewhat last year by not having a double-up spot until very late in the season, which saw him inactive for periods.
“But he has got a Championship berth with Scunthorpe sorted out for next season, and so I expect to see Jake really push on once again in 2018.”
KENT have named three teenagers for their 2018 National League challenge.
The Kings have signed 16-year-old Taylor Hampshire, who spent the bulk of last season with Birmingham after King’s Lynn withdrew from the third tier.
Anders Rowe (15) returns after a successful first year at Central Park, whilst newcomer Jacob Clouting (17) – son of former rider Savalas – has also been handed a team place.
Promoter Len Silver said: “There is no doubt that these three teenagers will feed off each other for their mutual benefit and it will be exciting to watch their progress.
“Anders showed what can be done last season - as our other teenager Jack Thomas did the year before and carried on progressing last term - and I expect him to be the one for these new youngsters to chase.
“Hopefully we will also have a fifth teenager in the ranks too as we search for a new Number 7 as well. It’s exciting times in Kent.”
EASTBOURNE have announced Arlington returns next season for 2017 team members Georgie Wood and Charley Powell.
Wood captained the Eagles to their third successive KO Cup victory this year, and will be going into his fourth campaign with the South coast club.
Powell, meanwhile, increased his average to 5.62 in his second season with the Eagles.
Wood and Powell continue a strong grass track theme running through the club’s named riders, as team-mates Tom Brennan and Charlie Brooks also have experience on the grass.
PLYMOUTH have named Richard Andrews as their second signing for the 2018 National League season.
Andrews will be back with the Devils after achieving a 4.45 average this year, and he becomes the second locally-based rider to return to the St Boniface Arena following the signing of Henry Atkins.
Andrews said: “I am really pleased to be asked back for a second season and I’m looking to improve on last season’s average.
“I am practicing in January and trying some new engines out to give me a little more speed. I can’t wait to get the 2018 season underway and to be part of the new team.”