UNDER-21 bosses have unveiled the schedule for this season’s British Youth Championship, which will run over six rounds starting at Leicester on April 14.The series was given a makeover last year after previously being run as the Under-15 Championship, and it proved to be a big success with Nathan Stoneman eventually winning the 500cc top prize last September.The series will once more see the 500cc and 250cc’s race for the British Championship with 125cc being run as a support class and they will again be kindly sponsored by Wessex Marine and Friends of Speedway, all under the control of Neil Vatcher and Phil Morris.Vatcher said: “We currently have at least 30 riders signed up to compete in the series, and we are hoping for more riders to contact us before the series begins. We are working hard to help the young British riders and have also arranged a Training Day during the Easter period at Buxton. This will be staged on Tuesday April 3 and is free-of-charge to any Under-16 rider with their own equipment.”BRITISH YOUTH CHAMPIONSHIP DATES: Leicester, Saturday April 14; Mildenhall, Sunday May 13; Northside, Sunday June 17; Eastbourne, Sunday July 8; Scunthorpe, Sunday July 29; Sittingbourne, Sunday September 9.
SIX-TIMES British Champion Scott Nicholls is the latest big name to join the line-up for Sunday’s Ben Fund Bonanza at Birmingham (5pm).The Coventry star joins triple World Champion Nicki Pedersen and other Grand Prix regulars Kenneth Bjerre, Chris Harris and Hans Andersen, as well as home trio Bjarne Pedersen, Danny King and Ben Barker.A bumper crowd is expected for the event, which raises vital cash for injured riders through the Speedway Riders’ Benevolent Fund.Organiser Paul Ackroyd said: “I am certainly looking forward to the event this year, I’m very pleased it is at Birmingham and I am hoping for a record attendance.”
NEW Coventry promoter Mick Horton says he is counting the days to the club’s prestigious Brandonapolis season-opener next Friday.Horton’s first meeting at Brandon features a top line-up and he has also overseen several changes including a newly-refurbished Track Shop and the re-opening of the restaurant for speedway events.He said: “We’ve done quite a few things as a result of supporter feedback and personally I can’t wait to get underway with a meeting including the likes of Greg Hancock and Nicki Pedersen.“We’ve brought the restaurant back by popular demand and are offering a three-course carvery meal for £34.95 at the Brandonapolis including admission and programme. Spaces are going fast, so I’d urge anyone interested to get in touch.”
SHEFFIELD have promoted Nigel Hinchliffe to their senior management team.Hinchliffe, who has worked with the youngsters in organised second-half events over the last five years, joins co-promoters Neil Machin and David Hoggart in charge of first team matters at Owlerton following the winter departure of Eric Boocock.Machin said: “Nigel has a wealth of knowledge relating to the rule book from his time as a trainee referee under the Speedway Control Bureau umbrella.“As a retired police officer he has obvious communication and people skills, and he will bring additional professional attributes with a view to developing team spirit.”
MILDENHALL have signed reigning British Youth Champion Nathan Stoneman to complete their line-up for the new National League season.The 15-year-old has an impressive record in junior speedway and will form a new-look reserve combination at West Row with Josh Bates.Fen Tigers co-promoter Michael Lee said: “Nathan is just the sort of rider we plan to develop here at Mildenhall. We want to bring the best young British talent to West Row and by signing Nathan and Josh we are doing just that.“Some might think it's a risk to have two young lads making their debuts for us at reserve but we are convinced that both of them have got what it takes.”
SUNDAY MARCH 11:BEN FUND BONANZA: Birmingham 5pm