British Speedway Weekly Bulletin


THE draw has been made for Berwick’s big night – as Grand Prix Qualifying speedway comes to Shielfield Park on June 16.The Bandits upgraded facilities and installed a new Polyfoam safety barrier over the winter in order to gain a licence to stage FIM meetings, and they are now building up to hosting one of the five qualifiers from which riders can progress to the Race-Offs, leading to the GP Challenge at Gorican on September 29 and possible places in the 2013 Grand Prix series.Coventry skipper Chris Harris and Wolverhampton’s Tai Woffinden carry Great Britain’s hopes in this meeting, with Woffinden fighting a race against time to be fit - having had an operation on a broken scaphoid after a crash at Monmore Green in mid-May.Other Elite League regulars heading for Berwick are Lakeside star Davey Watt and Peterborough’s fast-rising Swede Linus Sundstrom, and all four of the top-flight riders have ridden at the venue in their Premier League days.Several current Premier League riders are set to appear, including Somerset’s Sam Masters (who doubles-up with Poole) who helped Australia to qualify for the Final of the World Under-21 Team Cup with a 13-point score at Lakeside last Sunday.Sheffield’s Emiliano Sanchez, Plymouth’s Ryan Fisher and Redcar’s Matej Kus are all looking to make progress, and the meeting also includes two ex-Bandits in Tero Aarnio (now Scunthorpe) and Gino Franchetti (now Plymouth) – whilst Krzysztof Buczkowski, Christian Hefenbrock and Kenneth Hansen have all been regulars in British speedway during their career.Berwick have stressed that due to local planning regulations, all types of air-horns (including vuvuzelas) are banned at Shielfield Park.DRAW: Sam Masters (Aus), Emiliano Sanchez (Arg), Krzysztof Buczkowski (Pol), Chris Harris (GB), Gugielmo Franchetti (Ita), Christian Hefenbrock (Ger), Henry van der Steen (Ned), Kenneth Hansen (Den), Ryan Fisher (USA), Matej Kus (Cze), Tero Aarnio (Fin), Davey Watt (Aus), Tai Woffinden (GB), Linus Sundstrom (Swe), Facundo Leonel Albin (Arg), TBC (USA). Reserves: Danny King (GB), Lee Complin (GB).*BRITISH Under-21 Champion Joe Haines expressed the disappointment in the national team as they missed out on a place in the World Under-21 Team Cup Final.Haines and his colleagues needed to finish at least second at Lakeside last Sunday to have a chance of progressing to Poland in September, but were beaten to that position by Denmark in a semi-final dominated by Australia.Haines said: “What can I say? We said that it would come down to who turned up on the day and we had a bad one. A very bad one.“It was always going to be really tough with the teams in it but we are really disappointed with the result. It just came down to one afternoon and it wasn’t ours unfortunately.“It just wasn’t our day and we have to pick ourselves up and move on. We tried our best but on the day it wasn’t to be, so we have to look forward now.”





BELLE VUE chief David Gordon is calling on supporters to back the club through their troubled start to the season.Gordon said: “We’ve got to ride out our awful run of bad luck. We thought we’d got our first win in the bag against Eastbourne last Monday but then we suffered strokes of bad luck and it all went wrong.“Everyone has bad luck but the timing of ours seems to punish us severely. We haven’t been able to run the team we selected in the run-up to the season even once and that makes everything that much harder.”BIRMINGHAM boss Phil Morris said his team had responded superbly in winning at Coventry after an in-depth meeting which followed a disappointing home defeat by Poole.Morris said: “I thought it was a fantastic response on Monday, credit to all the boys because they had been told by Graham (Drury) in no uncertain terms what was expected of them.“He came into the team meeting after I’d had a chat and he tore into them. He didn’t hold back and there were a few choice words but it’s obviously worked because of the way the boys reacted on Monday.”COVENTRY skipper Chris Harris says the crash of Scott Nicholls in Monday’s home defeat to Birmingham was a major setback, as the Bees await news on Nicholls’ collarbone injury.Harris said: “It’s very disappointing to lose at home to anyone, and obviously in a local derby it’s a real kick in the teeth.“To lose Scott is a big blow, although to see him get up and walk away was a relief given the speed of the crash. It was a racing accident, but when you see Scott in pain like that you know it’s a big crash.”EASTBOURNE commercial manager Chris Macdonald has arranged a tie-up between the club and the Hailsham Leisure Centre enabling four members of the Eagles team to have free use of the facilities to aid fitness.Macdonald said: “Freedom Leisure operates centres all across Sussex and we are delighted for their support at Hailsham for members of the team. It is important the riders stay fit and the facilities at Hailsham are superb.”LAKESIDE manager Neil Vatcher said his team had performed superbly in emotional circumstances when they defeated Swindon 50-40 in their first home match following tributes to Lee Richardson.Vatcher said: “It was very moving and I think everyone was affected by Jon’s (Cook) words. Yet for the boys to go out and race as hard as they did 15 minutes later was a credit to each and every one of them.“As soon as Heat 1 got underway I noticed the air of determination and the will to win, and I just can’t praise them enough. To go and get all three points against Swindon was a real bonus given the circumstances of the evening.”KING’S LYNN boss Rob Lyon is looking for the Stars to keep going with the form they showed in a comfortable home win over Wolverhampton last Wednesday, as they prepare for a busy spell of home matches against Lakeside, Birmingham and Swindon.Lyon said: “Like I have always said, we will go and do what we can do with out own ability, and what we have in the team. I feel confident after seeing them beat Wolves, we have got enough in the tank to fend off most teams around here now.”PETERBOROUGH boss Jan Staechmann says the Panthers have to put Monday’s 57-35 defeat at Wolverhampton behind them as they prepare to face unbeaten Poole at the Showground on Thursday.Staechmann said: “Although we lost there were still some positive things to take from it, with Michael (Jepsen Jensen) again in good form and having some good battles with their two Swedes. Also a special mention must go to Richard (Lawson) who continued to work hard and battle away all night.“Thankfully Linus (Sundstrom) is okay and was just winded and a bit shaken up - he was also feeling a bit dehydrated. I spoke to him again at the end of the meeting and he’ll be okay to ride in the rest of his meetings this week.”POOLE promoter Matt Ford is looking forward to the re-match between Swedish Grand Prix rostrum finishers Chris Holder and Freddie Lindgren at Wimborne Road on Wednesday.Ford said: “There is no question that Chris and Freddie have gone from pretenders to contenders in the world championship, underlined by their final performances on Saturday in Sweden.“Freddie got the edge over Chris this time, although Chris went into the final as the favourite. I know Chris was happy with third place on the night but the re-match on Wednesday between the two should be riveting viewing.”SWINDON boss Alun Rossiter saluted his side’s professionalism in running up a 60-point total away from home at struggling Belle Vue on Monday.Rossiter said: “It was a professional job well done by our boys. I realise the problems Belle Vue have got, but you still have to race against what’s there and to score 60 away is still some achievement.“The four points keeps us ticking on in the league and people said we could struggle when Peter Kildemand moved into the top five – but this proved otherwise, and Jason Doyle is going to be a very strong reserve too!”WOLVERHAMPTON are celebrating Her Majesty’s Diamond Jubilee on Monday June 4 with a bumper night of family entertainment.This includes free children’s rides, rider autograph sessions, pre-meeting 250cc and Men In Black veteran races and free child admission for under-12s, with the Elite League action against Swindon getting underway at 8pm.Promoter Chris Van Straaten said: “This is the only visit of the season from the high-flying Robins and it will be a tough match. I expect a good night of speedway but also a great night of all-round entertainment for the family. It will be a great way to celebrate the Jubilee.”


BERWICK boss Ian Rae said he was relieved to take all three points from a tough clash with Glasgow with the usually high-scoring Sebastian Alden below his best.Rae said: “Glasgow put up a good fight and with Seb struggling to get to grips we might have been in trouble, but the rest of the lads raised their game and even the new boys, Lubos and Jason took four full or paid wins between them meaning our strength in depth won the day – and the match for us.”EDINBURGH comfortably made it through their KO Cup tie with Rye House, racing to a 59-31 win over the Rockets at home before wrapping up a 20-point aggregate victory at Hoddesdon.Monarchs director Mike Hunter said: “The whole team contributed to our passage to the next round, but it doesn’t half help when your No.1 is in the kind of form which Craig Cook is at the moment.”GLASGOW pulled off a dramatic recovery to overcome Plymouth in the KO Cup and set up a quarter-final with fierce rivals Edinburgh.The Tigers trailed by four points on aggregate with two heats to go in the second leg at Ashfield, but finished with two 5-1s completing their victory thanks to James Grieves and Joe Screen in Heat 15.IPSWICH will be boosted by the return of Danish star Morten Risager for their home clash with Rye House on Thursday.Risager has been out since a crash on the first night of the season – ironically also against the Rockets – and comes back with fellow injured Witch Taylor Poole moving out of the declared team as he is still around six weeks away from fitness.LEICESTER’S successful start to the Premier League campaign continued with an impressive 50-43 win over in-form Somerset at Beaumont Park.Lions co-promoter Alan Jones said: “We are naturally pleased with ourselves and how the team applied themselves to the challenge. Borne out of our home record last season and the two reverses we suffered in the League Cup last month, teams come to Beaumont Park expecting to win but that result will go a long way to reducing such thoughts.”NEWCASTLE set up a KO Cup quarter-final tie with Sheffield with a strong all-round display against Redcar to wipe out an eight-point first leg deficit.Manager George English said: “It was especially pleasing to see Ludvig Lindgren enjoy the best speedway with us so far and he’s really starting to enjoy things on Tyneside so there’s even better to come. Now we meet Sheffield in the quarter final and we can’t wait for the tie to come around.”PLYMOUTH have made a change at reserve with former Glasgow man Robert Ksiezak coming in to replace Gino Franchetti, who has been dropped after a series of disappointing scores.Promoter Mike Bowden said: “We welcome Robert to Plymouth and I am sure he will do well for us. It is unfortunate that we have had to release Gino Franchetti, but he has had enough matches and is just not scoring the points.”REDCAR have called in club asset Robert Branford to replace broken collarbone victim Mark Jones for their home clash with Edinburgh on Thursday.Manager Jitendra Duffill said: “Some of the boys are blowing hot and cold at present and we have to sort that out. I exempt Carl Wilkinson from that comment. He is doing the job he was brought into do and is actually exceeding his average.”RYE HOUSE star Luke Bowen accepted the Rockets had given themselves too much of a mountain to climb in the KO Cup with their heavy first leg defeat at Edinburgh.Bowen said: “The boys are really disappointed to be knocked out of the competition, but the damage was clearly done last night (Friday), to be honest.”SCUNTHORPE star Thomas Jorgensen is facing a race to be fit for his World Under-21 semi-final in the Ukraine this weekend after a crash at Plymouth last Friday.Scorpions manager Richard Hollingsworth said: “Thomas suffered a sprained knee in his opening-heat crash. We’re thankful it’s not worse and Thomas is desperate to return to action in time for Saturday. He will miss our meeting at Berwick either way and we will utilise rider replacement in his absence.”SHEFFIELD newcomer Chris Schramm is sure he will soon get to grips with having the Owlerton circuit as his home base, after some encouraging rides in his first meeting.Schramm said: “It is a very fast track so to come back for my first Premier League meeting here, it was a bit of a battle. It's very hard to keep your chin after you've had a bad one so it's even harder to do it after two bad ones! If I can carry on the season the way I finished Thursday's meeting I'll be happy.”SOMERSET will be calling on a number of guest riders in their KO Cup bid against Ipswich on Friday, with four members of their regular line-up engaged on Under-21 duty over the weekend.Co-boss Garry May said: “Obviously it is not an ideal situation for us, but I am sure that the guys we will be bringing in as guest replacements will do a job for us and that we will be able to make up that six-point deficit from last week’s first leg at Ipswich.”WORKINGTON boss Tony Jackson was pleased to confirm top place in the Northern League Cup group, and says the Comets can now focus for a time on their Premier League aspirations.Jackson said: “It was a really positive way to finish the League Cup programme with our lads winning all but two of the races. We can now put the League Cup to one side for a while, as we wait to find out who will be our semi-final opponents, and concentrate on the upcoming Premier League fixtures.”FIXTURE PICTURE…WEDNESDAY MAY 30:SKY SPORTS ELITE LEAGUE: King’s Lynn v Lakeside 7.30ELITE LEAGUE KO CUP 2nd leg: Poole v Wolverhampton 7.30

THURSDAY MAY 31:SKY SPORTS ELITE LEAGUE: Birmingham v Belle Vue 7.30, Peterborough v Poole 7.30PREMIER LEAGUE: Ipswich v Rye House 7.30, Redcar v Edinburgh 7.30, Sheffield v Somerset 7.45

FRIDAY JUNE 1:ELITE LEAGUE KO CUP 1st leg: Coventry v Lakeside 8pmPREMIER LEAGUE: Edinburgh v Sheffield 7.30, Plymouth v Redcar 7.30PREMIER LEAGUE KO CUP: Somerset v Ipswich 7.30

SATURDAY JUNE 2:SKY SPORTS ELITE LEAGUE: Eastbourne v Poole 7.30ELITE LEAGUE KO CUP 2nd leg: Lakeside v Coventry 7.45PREMIER LEAGUE: Berwick v Scunthorpe 7pmNATIONAL LEAGUE: Rye House v King’s Lynn 7pm

SUNDAY JUNE 3:PREMIER LEAGUE: Glasgow v Newcastle 4pmNATIONAL LEAGUE:  Mildenhall v Stoke 4.30

MONDAY JUNE 4:SKY SPORTS ELITE LEAGUE: Peterborough v Lakeside 7.30, Wolverhampton v Swindon 8pmPREMIER LEAGUE: Newcastle v Glasgow 6.30, Workington v Berwick 7pmLEAGUE CUP: Rye House v Ipswich 2pm, Scunthorpe v Sheffield 3pmNATIONAL LEAGUE: Rye House v Mildenhall (follows LC fixture), Scunthorpe v Buxton (follows PL fixture)

TUESDAY JUNE 5:NATIONAL LEAGUE: Isle of Wight v King’s Lynn 7.30

WEDNESDAY JUNE 6:SKY SPORTS ELITE LEAGUE: King’s Lynn v Birmingham 7.30, Poole v Swindon 7.30

THURSDAY JUNE 7:SKY SPORTS ELITE LEAGUE: Birmingham v King’s Lynn 7.30, Swindon v Poole 7.30PREMIER LEAGUE: Redcar v Rye House 7.30, Sheffield v Workington 7.45

FRIDAY JUNE 8:PREMIER LEAGUE: Ipswich v Redcar 7.30, Plymouth v Leicester 7.30, Somerset v Berwick 7.30

SATURDAY JUNE 9:PREMIER LEAGUE: Leicester v Newcastle 7.30, Rye House v Berwick 7pm, Workington v Plymouth 7pm


MONDAY JUNE 11:SKY SPORTS ELITE LEAGUE: Belle Vue v Wolverhampton 7.30, King’s Lynn v Swindon 7.30

TUESDAY JUNE 12:NATIONAL LEAGUE KO CUP S/F 1st leg: Dudley v Isle of Wight 7.30


Related Motorsport Articles

84,628 articles