Bikes: SPEEDWAY Weekly round-up

and fixtures 12.8.08

BIG EVENT LATEST

HANS Andersen is hoping to make a fairytale start to his Coventry career... by helping the Bees to the Elite League Pairs title at Swindon.

Andersen will join Chris Harris to represent the Brandon club on Sunday, August 17 at 6pm in a star-studded field.He said: "When I was in talks with Coventry everything felt right about it. I'm pleased to have it all sorted out and I hope we can win some silverware this season."

Peterborough, Andersen's former club, have named new signing Ryan Sullivan alongside Kenneth Bjerre.And staying with new signings, Rory Schlein's move to Ipswich means he lined up alongside Piotr Swiderski fo! r the Witches.ELITE LEAGUE PAIRS LINE-UP (Swindon, August 17, 6pm):

BELLE VUE: Jason Crump, Charlie Gjedde; COVENTRY: Hans Andersen, Chris Harris; EASTBOURNE: Scott Nicholls, Lee Richardson; IPSWICH: Piotr Swiderski, Rory Schlein ; LAKESIDE: Adam Shields, Jonas Davidsson; PETERBOROUGH: Ryan Sullivan, Kenneth Bjerre; POOLE: Bjarne Pedersen, Chris Holder; SWINDON: Leigh Adams, Mads Korneliussen; WOLVERHAMPTON: Freddie Lindgren, Niels Kristian Iversen.

CHRIS Holder is hoping for a repeat performance when he rides at Birmingham in the Elite League Riders' Championship.Holder will represent Poole in his first season with the club on Wednesday, August 20, at the plush Perry Barr venue.And when he rode there last season for the Isle of Wight he notched a faultless 15-point maximum."I'm happy with the way my season is going," said Holder. "And I remember Birmingham was a very fair track, I'm pleased to be there and hope I can do well."

The ! ELRC is the biggest meeting ever staged in Birmingham and a massive crowd is expected with fans urged to arrive early."It promises to be some night," said Brummies owner Tony Mole. "We are proud and privileged to be staging this event on behalf of British Speedway."

ELITE LEAGUE RIDERS’ CHAMPIONSHIP LINE-UP (Birmingham, August 20, 7.30pm):Chris Holder (Poole), Jason Crump (Belle Vue), Freddie Lindgren (Wolverhampton), Leigh Adams (Swindon), Chris Harris (Coventry), Lee Richardson (Eastbourne), Piotr Swiderski (Ipswich), Kenneth Bjerre (Peterborough), Charlie Gjedde (Belle Vue), Scott Nicholls (Eastbourne), Adam Shields (Lakeside), Bjarne Pedersen (Poole), Mads Korneliussen (Swindon), Andreas Jonsson (Lakeside), Hans Andersen (Coventry), Niels Kristian Iversen (Wolverhampton). Reserves: Rory Schlein (Ipswich), Daniel King (Peterborough).

ELITE LEAGUE LATEST

BELLE VUE have a break until August 27 until their next home match - and will inv! ite accompanied children in free of charge for the match against Wolverhampton which they see as potentially vital to their final Elite League position.Owner David Gordon said: "It will be the end of the school holidays so we have decided to admit younger fans free. We are doing it as a thank-you to all the families who came along to make our 80th Anniversary meeting such a success."We had another good crowd against Ipswich last Monday and want to make the Wolverhampton match another big night as they always bring a good number of supporters with them."

COVENTRY manager Peter Oakes says the Bees will still travel to Wimborne Road in a positive mood despite being held to a draw by Poole in the first leg of their Cup semi-final.

Oakes said: "In my eyes Poole are by far the best team in the Elite League at the moment, with the confidence that eight straight wins breeds."To pull it back the way we did makes it a one-off Cup-tie which is not a bad positi! on to be in - we know exactly what we've got to do, we've got to go there and win."

EASTBOURNE manager Trevor Geer has labelled Lewis Bridger as a key man in the Eagles' team - with their play-off aspirations under serious threat from recent away reversals.Geer said: "Lewis seems to make such a difference. The nights we have really struggled have been when he has struggled, and we need him to be firing."We've definitely got to win everything now to stand a chance of the play-offs, but at least we are still in there with something to race for."

IPSWICH rider/manager Chris Louis hopes the acquisition of Rory Schlein, who comes in to replace the injured Louis himself, can boost the Witches' play-off chances.Louis said: "I know many fans wanted us to move sooner to get a replacement, but we wanted the right person to become available and we were not going to jump into something quickly, like we did last season."Our season is very much alive and it! 's not too late for us to make a move as regards the play-offs. We are aiming for a top-four place and although a top-two one looks difficult, we are still trying."

LAKESIDE delivered the perfect response after their shock home defeat by Swindon when a weakened side collected all three points by winning at Wolverhampton.Jonas Davidsson scored a paid maximum at Monmore Green with Adam Shields also unbeaten from his first four rides as the Hammers overcame the absence of Andreas Jonsson and Joonas Kylmakorpi.Manager Jon Cook said: "Maybe the home defeat was a wake-up call. We've had such a fantastic run recently, it had to come to an end sometime, and it was just one of those evenings when things didn't get going."

PETERBOROUGH are set for a brighter future after a series of recent problems - according to new owner Rick Frost, who has bought the club from Colin Horton.Frost said: "I always made it clear to Colin that if he could get a better offer els! ewhere to feel free and do it. He looked into some options and then came back to me."I enjoy building companies and see this as a big challenge. The fans will certainly see the club grow and get stronger with top quality riders and a great team. We were not prepared to leave things as they were and finish bottom of the league."

POOLE manager Neil Middleditch was pleased to come away from Coventry with a 45-45 draw in the first leg of their KO Cup semi-final - but says there is more work to be done.Middleditch said: "Everyone played their part and managed to score points, and we didn’t deserve to lose. Possibly some people might say that we should have won, but I would have taken a draw if you had offered it to me before the start of the match."Make no bones about it, this Coventry side is a very strong outfit and we will do well to beat them at Poole in the second leg on Wednesday. It's still all to play for, but will have to be at our very best to ge! t through to the Final."

SWINDON manager Alun Rossiter has hinted that there could be team changes at Blunsdon with the Robins overly reliant on skipper Leigh Adams and Croatian sensation Jurica Pavlic in recent matches.Rossiter said: "I will now sit down with Terry Russell and talk about what to do. It is clear though that something must be done. We have a few options and I’m not scared to axe riders if that is what’s needed. "There are some options out there and I have to do what is best for the team. There will be no knee-jerk reaction, however. The decision we will make will be for the good of the team."

WOLVERHAMPTON skipper Fredrik Lindgren could not hide his disappointment as the Monmore men slipped to a seventh home defeat of the season at the hands of title-chasing Lakeside.Lindgren said: "I think we handed the meeting to Lakeside on a plate, we didn’t make them work hard enough and although they’re a great team I was confident goin! g into the meeting, I really thought we had enough strength to do it."I didn’t ride as well as I feel I can but some of the other guys were struggling in a big way and I don’t know why. I really can’t offer any excuses for the team because the fans don’t want to hear it."

PREMIER LEAGUE LATEST

BERWICK racked up their biggest win of the season against Mildenhall on Saturday, dropping just three of a possible 75 points over the struggling Fen Tigers.Bandits promoter Peter Waite said: "We know Mildenhall are not the toughest of opposition this year, but one thing is for sure - if any of our lads had any confidence doubts, this romp will have got rid of them and that means stronger performances in the future."

BIRMINGHAM star Kyle Legault says the Brummies should approach their Premier Trophy Final against in-form Edinburgh in a positive frame of mind.Legault said: "I always enjoy racing at Edinburgh and it would be great to get! a trophy after what has been a difficult year for the team and myself. It should help having the first leg at home and it would be cool to get something out of the year."

EDINBURGH underlined their title credentials with an emphatic win over Workington in Monday's televised fixture.Monarchs boss Alex Harkess said: "We got the ideal start in the first four races, they all went our way and that made it hard for them to come back. I did worry about this fixture, and I'm very happy with the result."

GLASGOW have been boosted by the news that Robert Ksiezak, Trent Leverington and Lee Dicken should all be fit for Sunday's local derby against Edinburgh.All three suffered knocks in their previous match against Sheffield, and the Tigers are also awaiting news on skipper Shane Parker who is due for practice sessions this week after a lengthy absence.

ISLE OF WIGHT star Cory Gathercole is hopeful of returning to action in Jason Bunyan's Testimonial meeting nex! t Tuesday after over a month out with a broken hand.Gathercole said: "I will have to be guided by the surgeons, but I want to be back at the earliest possible date. It's been so frustrating to be out of action at this critical time of the season, and really boring too!"

KING'S LYNN manager Rob Lyon says that the Danish influence within the Stoke team will give his side plenty to think about at the Norfolk Arena on Wednesday.Lyon said: "It will be interesting to see how the three Danish riders do because, as we all know, Kings Lynn is one of Nicki Pedersen’s favourite tracks and no doubt they would have asked him for a few pointers!"

MILDENHALL manager Laurence Rogers admits the club sorely require the funds that should be in place when Allen Trump takes over ownership of the Fen Tigers.Rogers said: "We have got to do something, and quick, to change it. Allen is coming to the nitty-gritty part of his takeover deal and hopefully he can inject so! me cash for a new rider or two."NEWCASTLE manager George English said the Diamonds' big win over Mildenhall acted as a good workout for Christian Henry and Jerran Hart who made their comebacks from injury.

English said: "It was good to see them riding untroubled from their time on the sidelines, and Jerran in particular rode exceptionally well which is just what we need as we approach the run in to the season’s end. The lads know we need more away wins to guarantee play-offs."

READING are facing up to the fact that there will be no speedway in the town next year with Smallmead Stadium set to close and construction on its' replacement not starting in time.Racers owner Mark Legg said: "We have been assured that the new stadium is now definitely going ahead and although we’ll have to miss the 2009 season, they will have the new site ready for us to move into in time for the 2010 campaign."

REDCAR manager Brian Havelock had praise for his team after ! holding title-chasing Somerset to just a six-point margin at the Oak Tree Arena on Friday.Havelock said: "We had an excellent meeting and their team manager was sweating cobs all night. They’re a cracking side but good luck to them, every rider they've brought in this season has improved. It was a brilliant match."

RYE HOUSE reserve Luke Bowen is hopeful that his injury problems are now behind him and he can enjoy a trouble-free run to the end of the season.Bowen said: "It's working out well for me now. I'm getting some big scores here at Rye, and my recent scores at Glasgow and Redcar have given me something to build on away. I'm also staying away from injury, which has been the main jinx in my career."

SCUNTHORPE promoter Rob Godfrey feels that this Friday's derby clash with rivals Sheffield is one of the most eagerly-awaited fixtures of the season.Godfrey said: "It is sure to be a real battle and a cracking atmosphere. We owe them big style and! hopefully we can show them that we are a much better side than back in April."

SHEFFIELD star Ricky Ashworth could be out for the rest of the season after suffering a broken wrist in an horrific crash with Trent Leverington at Glasgow on Sunday.Ashworth said: "It was a horrible moment for both of us. I knew we were heading to the fence and we were going really quick, there was nothing we could do about it. It’s a disappointment for me because I’d been riding so well and I was enjoying my racing."

SOMERSET skipper Simon Walker remains frustrated by the slowness of his recovery from a back injury.

Walker said: "I've been back for further treatment as well as physio on the back, but it's just not healing as quickly as I would like. It's really too early to say how much of a possibility a return this week would be."

STOKE have added a third young Danish rider to their ranks with Krister Jakobsen joining the team as a replacement for the departed Barr! ie Evans.

Potters promoter Dave Tattum said: "A number of clubs were chasing Krister and I'm delighted he is coming here. He seems a sensible young man who wants to spend some time in the Premier League and if the likes of Erik Gundersen and Sam Ermolenko rate him, he must have a decent pedigree."

WORKINGTON have selected in-form Somerset star Jason Doyle to guest for the injured Daniel Nermark in Saturday's return clash with Edinburgh at Derwent Park.

Manager Ian Thomas said: "As Somerset are also vying for top spot with Edinburgh Jason has added incentive to do well for us. He can help Somerset’s cause by picking up points for us."

FIXTURE PICTURE

TUESDAY AUGUST 12:PREMIER LEAGUE: Isle of Wight v King's Lynn 7.30

WEDNESDAY AUGUST 13:ELITE LEAGUE KOC: Lakeside v Eastbourne 7.45, Poole v Coventry 7.30PREMIER LEAGUE: King's Lynn v Stoke 7.30PREMIER TROPHY FINAL: Birmingham v Edinburgh 7.45

THU! RSDAY AUGUST 14:PREMIER LEAGUE: Sheffield v Reading 7.45, Redcar v Newcastle 7.30ACADEMY 3TT: Ipswich v Poole v Rye House 7.30SIDECARS: Isle of Wight 7.30

FRIDAY AUGUST 15:PREMIER LEAGUE: Scunthorpe v Sheffield 7.30, Somerset v Isle of Wight 7.30PREMIER TROPHY FINAL: Edinburgh v Birmingham 7.30SILVERLINE PAIRS: Plymouth 7.30

SATURDAY AUGUST 16:SKY SPORTS ELITE LEAGUE: Eastbourne v Ipswich 7.30PREMIER LEAGUE: Berwick v Newcastle 7pm, Rye House v Reading 7pm, Stoke v Isle of Wight 7.30, Workington v Edinburgh 7pmCONFERENCE LEAGUE: Weymouth v Redcar 7.15BRITISH UNDER-15 CHAMPIONSHIP Round 2: Northside 3pm

SUNDAY AUGUST 17:ELITE LEAGUE PAIRS: Swindon 6pmPREMIER LEAGUE: Glasgow v Edinburgh 4pm, Mildenhall v Rye House 4.30, Newcastle v Scunthorpe 6.30CONFERENCE LEAGUE: Buxton v Redcar 3pm

MONDAY AUGUST 18:SKY SPORTS ELITE LEAGUE: Poole v Belle Vue 7.30, Wol! verhampton v Coventry 7.30

TUESDAY AUGUST 19:JASON BUNYAN TESTIMONIAL: Isle of Wight 7.30

WEDNESDAY AUGUST 20:ELITE LEAGUE RIDERS CHAMPIONSHIP: Birmingham 7.30PREMIER LEAGUE: King's Lynn v Glasgow 7.30

THURSDAY AUGUST 21:SKY SPORTS ELITE LEAGUE: Ipswich v Wolverhampton 7.30, Peterborough v Lakeside 7.30, Swindon v Coventry 7.30PREMIER LEAGUE: Redcar v Glasgow 7.30, Sheffield v Birmingham 7.45

FRIDAY AUGUST 22:SKY SPORTS ELITE LEAGUE: Coventry v Peterborough 8pm, Lakeside v Wolverhampton 8pmPREMIER LEAGUE: Edinburgh v Workington 7.30PREMIER LEAGUE KO CUP: Somerset v Rye House 7.30CONFERENCE LEAGUE: Boston v Redcar 7.30

SATURDAY AUGUST 23:SKY SPORTS ELITE LEAGUE: Eastbourne v Poole 7.30PREMIER LEAGUE: Berwick v Workington 7pm, Stoke v Rye House 7.30CONFERENCE LEAGUE: Rye House v Sittingbourne 7pm, Weymouth v Scunthorpe 7.15

SUNDAY AUGUST 24:PREMIER LEAGUE: Birmingham v Sheffield 6pm, Glasgow v Stoke 4pm, Mildenhall v King's Lynn 4.30CONFERENCE LEAGUE: Buxton v Plymouth 3pm, Sittingbourne v Rye House 12pmTYNE/TEES TROPHY: Newcastle v Redcar 5.30

MONDAY AUGUST 25:SKY SPORTS ELITE LEAGUE: Coventry v Ipswich 4.30, Poole v Peterborough 6pm, Wolverhampton v Belle Vue 7.30PREMIER LEAGUE: Scunthorpe v Glasgow 3pm, Reading v King's Lynn 6pm, Rye House v Stoke 2pm, Rye House v Somerset (follows previous fixture), Workington v Berwick 7pmCONFERENCE LEAGUE: Scunthorpe v Plymouth (follows PL fixture)

TUESDAY AUGUST 26:BRITISH SIDECAR CHAMPIONSHIP: Isle of Wight 7.30

WEDNESDAY AUGUST 27:SKY SPORTS ELITE LEAGUE: Belle Vue v Wolverhampton 7.30, Poole v Swindon 7.30PREMIER LEAGUE: Birmingham v Mildenhall 7.45, Somerset v Edinburgh 7.30