Bikes: SPEEDWAY news

(SPEEDWAY 1)

WORKINGTON manager Ian Thomas is predicting one of the closest seasons inthe history of the Premier League.The Comets are likely to be amongst the favourites with a powerful line-upon paper - but Thomas believes up to a dozen clubs could challenge.He said: "I think there are a lot of well-matched teams. I'm expecting somevery good, tight matches, which can only be good for the spectators."

(SPEEDWAY 2)

GLASGOW skipper Shane Parker has announced that the coming season will behis last in the sport.The long-serving Australian had considered quitting at the end of 2008, butwas unwilling to bow out after an injury-hit year.Parker said: "That was no way for me to finish, so all I can hope is thatthis season goes well for me and I can leave with something tangible totake."

(SPEEDWAY 3)

TOM P Madsen's Testimonial meeting at King's Lynn on March 20 will feature aground-breaking trial of using two referees.Jim Lawrence and Mick Bates will be in charge, with one based on thecentre-green and in radio contact with his colleague in the box.Madsen said: "I'm happy they've both agreed to work on my meeting as I wasalways looking to do something different."

(SPEEDWAY 4)

KING'S Lynn will launch their team campaign with a one-off fixture againstPremier League champions Edinburgh on March 25.The Stars are keen for revenge over the Monarchs, who followed up theirleague success with a dramatic aggregate win over Lynn in the play-offs.Stars boss Rob Lyon said: "We have agreed to give Edinburgh a ten-pointadvantage as the trophy will only be run over one leg."