SPEEDWAY News and Fixtures

(SPEEDWAY 1)

POOLE and Swindon clash in a vital Elite League fixture at Wimborne Road on Wednesday with both sides in the thick of the play-off battle.The Pirates’ win at Wolverhampton on Monday moved them into second place, nine points ahead of the Robins who are just outside the top four but with one match in hand.Poole promoter Matt Ford said: “We really did a great job at Wolverhampton but that won't count for much if we let things slip from here on in. With Swindon visting us this week we know that we are likely to be put to the test, these 'derby' matches always provide plenty of talking points. “They have riders that can really perform at our place, we just have to not allow them to do that. The best way to do that is to ride with the same spirit as we did on Monday, which I very much expect the lads to do.”Swindon skipper Troy Batchelor said: “We had a tough start to the season but I think over the last few weeks before the World Cup break we started to show what we are capable of. “We've had some good results recently and our confidence is starting to pick up again as a team, so hopefully we can build on that.”(SPEEDWAY 2)

POOLE have re-declared in their Fast Track reserve position with Benji Compton replacing local rider Brendan Johnson.Compton was a target of the Pirates earlier in the season but injury prevented his inclusion, with Ben Hopwood and then Johnson instead having spells in the team in place of original choice Lee Smart.Promoter Matt Ford said: “I have re-declared the side, hopefully for the final time this season, as I have been wanting Benji to ride for us for some time now, ever since the AGM to be honest. "It was not an option then, but he became available back in April and we had prepared and submitted all the paperwork in readiness to bring him into the side. All that was completed just hours before he sustained an injury and we had to put those plans on hold.“Benji has worked back to fitness and is keen to do a job for us. He has that little bit extra experience which I think is going to be crucial now that we are at the business end of the season.”

(SPEEDWAY 3)

FORMER World Champion Sam Ermolenko has called on Speedway fans to flock to a celebration of bikes and bikers at Matlock Bath on Saturday, August 16.The popular HME Collective Biker Festival will host an evening centred around speedway from 4:45pm, in particular the Latvian Grand Prix taking place that night.The meeting will be screened on a big screen in a marquee before a stage Q&A with American legend Ermolenko, commentator Jack Burnicle and other motorcycle stars.A party will follow with live music whilst over night camping is available as the biking festival continues the next day.With a focus on speedway for the first time, Ermolenko has called on supporters to flock to the Grand Pavilion in Matlock Bath in Derbyshire to support the event.Said Ermolenko: “They’re expecting 40,000 bikers to come to the event over that weekend, so it is going to be really huge.“There’s a pavilion that has a big history of having bands and so forth, and that’s in the area we’re taking over.“We’ll have hundreds of motorcycles on show, from past to current and we’ve invited some big names, too."All of this is free and we just want the public to come along and celebrate motorcycling.“Because this is on the 16th, the same night as the Latvian Grand Prix, we’ve got a ballroom that seats about 180 people, it’s called The Raft and we’re inviting people along for a speedway party.“We’ll have a hog roast, Jack Burnicle will be MC, speedway on the big screen and a live band afterwards.“This thing could become huge, and the kind of people we’ve got behind us, we’re going to pull this off without a doubt. A rock and bike festival, where’s it going to stop? It could be a motorcycling Glastonbury!”

(FIXTURES)

WEDNESDAY AUGUST 6:ELITE LEAGUE: Poole v Swindon 7.30

THURSDAY AUGUST 7:ELITE LEAGUE: Swindon v Lakeside 7.30PREMIER LEAGUE: Ipswich v Rye House 7.30, Redcar v Berwick 7.30, Sheffield v Workington 7.30

FRIDAY AUGUST 8:ELITE LEAGUE: Lakeside v Poole 8pmPREMIER LEAGUE: Edinburgh v Newcastle 7.30, Scunthorpe v Peterborough 7.30, Somerset v Rye House 7.30

SATURDAY AUGUST 9:ELITE LEAGUE: Leicester v Wolverhampton 7.30PREMIER LEAGUE: Berwick v Sheffield 7pm, Rye House v Somerset 7pmNATIONAL LEAGUE: Devon v Coventry 1.30, Devon v Stoke 3.30

SUNDAY AUGUST 10:PREMIER LEAGUE: Workington v Scunthorpe 7.30PREMIER LEAGUE KO CUP: Glasgow v Newcastle 1.30, Newcastle v Glasgow 7.30NATIONAL LEAGUE FOURS: Coventry 2.30