SPEEDWAY News and Fixtures

(SPEEDWAY 1)

GREAT Britain’s World Championship riders will be heading to Poland and Croatia for their semi-finals later this month.Chris Harris and Lewis Bridger will race at Polish venue Czestochowa, whilst Craig Cook and Danny King have been drawn at Gorican, with both meetings taking place on June 21 and places for the Grand Prix Challenge are on offer.Eastbourne have confirmed that their scheduled Elite League fixture against Birmingham on the same day has been postponed due to rider availability.GORICAN DRAW: Hans Andersen, Craig Cook, Linus Sundstrom, Danny King, Jurica Pavlic, Maciej Janowski, Mikkel Michelsen, Troy Batchelor, Nico Covatti, Tomas H Jonasson, Peter Kildemand, Josef Franc, Ricky Wells, Janusz Kolodziej, Martin Smolinski, Matej Zagar. Res: Tomas Suchanek, Matic Voldrih.CZESTOCHOWA DRAW: Patryk Dudek, Chris Harris, Jason Doyle, Kenneth Bjerre, Peter Ljung, Przemyslaw Pawlicki, Artem Laguta, Mads Korneliussen, David Bellego, Vaclav Milik, Adrian Miedzinski, Cameron Woodward, Nicolai Klindt, Oliver Berntzon, Lewis Bridger, Piotr Pawlicki. Res: Kim Nilsson, Mathias Schultz.(SPEEDWAY 2 – WEDNESDAY REVIEW)

BIRMINGHAM moved off the foot of the Elite League table with a 50-40 win over Belle Vue at Perry Barr.The Brummies secured maximum points from the meeting with a 5-1 in Heat 15 from top-scorers Danny King and Ben Barker, who got the better of Aces duo Matej Zagar and Scott Nicholls.Birmingham boss Jack Lee said: “It was a really big three points for us to move us off the bottom of the table, and to beat a strong Belle Vue side by ten points was a brilliant result.“It was a great team effort with some impressive performances all around, so it was a really positive night for us. There was some superb team riding which was good to see and proved important for us in the end.”Meanwhile King’s Lynn extended their lead at the top of the table to 14-points with a 54-39 home win over Wolverhampton – the Stars’ fifteenth victory in their sixteen Elite League fixtures so far.Niels-Kristian Iversen headed up a solid Stars display with 11+2 although Wolves’ Piotr Pawlicki took the individual honours with a 17-point haul including four race wins – but the visitors also saw reserve Ashley Morris taken to hospital after a heavy Heat 4 crash (see separate story).King’s Lynn manager Rob Lyon said: “Another great team performance. Winning matches in any sport breeds confidence, you can see the team are on a roll and we need to keep that going to the end of the season. “We are top of the league, flying high, but yet it means nothing, we need to get to the play-offs. If we take this form into the play-offs we will be up for it without a doubt and confident we can do something."Wolves promoter Chris Van Straaten said: “Pawlicki was sensational, (Tai) Woffinden fell which was unfortunate and a couple of the lads came good at the end which is encouraging.”

(SPEEDWAY 3 – THURSDAY PREVIEW)

SWINDON boss Alun Rossiter is expecting another tough Abbey Stadium encounter against Wolverhampton on Thursday.The Robins narrowly secured maximum points over Leicester last week but that meeting saw Dakota North injured, and Berwick’s David Bellego will stand in for the home side.Rossiter said: “This will be another tough meeting, especially with the reigning World Champion in town, and we’re going to have to make sure we’re all on our game.“I think Wolves look to be quite a solid team all the way through, but it’s important for us to build on last week.”Wolves bring in King’s Lynn’s Lewis Rose as a replacement for Ashley Morris, who was injured at the Norfolk Arena on Wednesday.In the Premier League Sheffield are gunning for revenge over local rivals Scunthorpe, who have won on both of their previous visits to Owlerton this season.The Tigers must use the rider-replacement facility for Ty Proctor as the Australian is required by his parent club Wolverhampton.Skipper Simon Stead said: “This is going to be a hard meeting for us but on a personal basis I can’t wait, I’m really looking forward to it.“It’s going to be hard without Ty because he’s a key rider for us and it’s a shame we can’t use him, but it’s up to the rest of us to try and make up for that.”Scunthorpe promoter Rob Godfrey said: “There’s been some cracking meetings between the two clubs in 2014, and this promises to be another one. Of course, we’d love to win at Sheffield for a third time in the same season – that would be unbelievable.”Redcar return to home action after a three-week break with a home clash against Plymouth – who put the Bears out of the Knockout Cup earlier in the season.Both sides have a guest at reserve with Simon Lambert replacing Luke Crang for Redcar whilst the Devils bring in James Sarjeant for Roland Benko, and Kalle Katajisto is also a doubt for the visitors.Bears boss Jitendra Duffill said: “Plymouth are a team that are in good form at present. Ben Barker is scoring heavily everywhere and Sam Simota is proving to be a very potent reserve. I expect Plymouth to present a very tough challenge for us and on paper they certainly look to be the stronger side.”Plymouth co-promoter Ashley Taylor said: “We had a good result in our cup match at Redcar, which enabled us to progress in the competition with an aggregate win. So it is important that we take something out of that match ahead of our visit to Edinburgh on Friday evening.”

(SPEEDWAY 4)

WOLVERHAMPTON youngster Ashley Morris is facing up to two months on the sidelines after his heavy crash at King’s Lynn on Wednesday.Morris, who also races for Workington in the Premier League, was moved to hospital in Cambridge overnight for treatment to slight bleeding on the brain. He has been ruled out of racing for 6-8 weeks.Wolves promoter Chris Van Straaten said: “There was naturally a lot of concern for Ash because it was a nasty crash. We wish him well and we will miss him over the next few weeks.”

(SPEEDWAY 5)

PETERBOROUGH have handed Danish rider Nicki Barrett a return to British Speedway.Former Berwick man Barrett is set to come into the Panthers team as a replacement for the injured Oliver Greenwood, with his debut expected to be next Tuesday in the League Cup semi-final against Workington.Panthers co-promoter Trevor Swales said: “Nicki jumped at the chance to join Peterborough. He has given up some full-time work back in Denmark in order to return to British Speedway and we’re very happy to have him on board.“It has become clear that we cannot continue to cover the absence of Ollie with guests. Hopefully the arrival of Nicki will give us a little bit more firepower down at reserve.”

(SPEEDWAY 6)

SHEFFIELD have completed a deal to make British Under-21 Champion Josh Bates an asset of the club.Bates, who is locally based in Barnsley, has been racing for the Tigers in the Premier League this season and the deal has been completed with his National League club Mildenhall – after interest from top-flight clubs.Sheffield co-promoter Damien Bates said: “It's no secret that we wanted Josh to become our asset once we took over at the Owlerton and we've now managed to strike an agreement."There were other tracks in for him from the Elite League and we're delighted that Josh opted to sign with us. We are ambitious and this underlines that.”

(FIXTURES)

THURSDAY JUNE 12:ELITE LEAGUE: Swindon v Wolverhampton 7.30PREMIER LEAGUE: Redcar v Plymouth 7.30, Sheffield v Scunthorpe 7.45

FRIDAY JUNE 13:ELITE LEAGUE: Coventry v Belle Vue 7.30, Lakeside v Leicester 8pmPREMIER LEAGUE: Edinburgh v Plymouth 7.30PREMIER LEAGUE KO CUP Q/F 2nd leg: Somerset v Ipswich 7.30NATIONAL LEAGUE: King’s Lynn v Mildenhall 7.30

SATURDAY JUNE 14:PREMIER LEAGUE: Workington v Edinburgh 7pmPREMIER LEAGUE KO CUP 1st round 1st leg: Rye House v Glasgow 7pmNATIONAL LEAGUE: Devon v Cradley 1.30, Devon v Scunthorpe 3.15, Stoke v Buxton 7pm

SUNDAY JUNE 15:PREMIER LEAGUE: Newcastle v Somerset 6.30PREMIER LEAGUE KO CUP 1st round 2nd leg: Glasgow v Rye House 5pmNATIONAL LEAGUE PAIRS: Mildenhall 3.30