SPEEDWAY News

(SPEEDWAY 1)

SCUNTHORPE have completed their 2015 team-building with two Scorpions from this year, one former favourite returning and two newcomers.David Howe and Josh Auty are the two top-scoring riders in club history and will both continue with the club next season, whilst Carl Wilkinson is back after a previous spell from 2008-11.In addition, the Lincolnshire side have moved for Australian rider Alex Davies who missed out on UK racing this year after winning the Premier League title with Somerset in 2013, whilst 17-year-old Ellis Perks will make his first appearance at PL level on loan from Poole.Promoter Rob Godfrey said: “Carl is Mr Reliable and every team needs a rider like Wilko, and Alex has been one of the best away scorers around our track. Every time he came to Scunny in the past with whoever he was riding for at the time, be it Newport or Somerset, he always filled his boots.“We’ve got to thank Poole for their help but we’ll hopefully be giving Ellis the training he needs to go onto bigger and better things, so it all works well for both clubs.“I don’t think I really need to say that much about David or Josh, simply to say that I’m delighted to have them back. They were always in our plans for this season. They are both a huge part of this club, and I hope that continues for many years to come.”

(SPEEDWAY 2)

SIMON Stead will return to hometown club Sheffield next season – this time in a full transfer from Elite League Swindon.Stead is now a club asset for the first time in his career after starting with Peterborough in 1998, and he won two league titles with Sheffield during a four year loan spell between 1999-2002.Promoter Damien Bates said: “We believe this is excellent news for Sheffield Speedway to have a rider of Simon’s quality on our books. He’s the reigning Premier League Riders’ Champion and he will be determined to retain that as well as helping the team to some success.“I would like to place on record our thanks to Swindon Speedway, Alun Rossiter and Terry Russell, for the way in which our negotiations were conducted. They were a pleasure to deal with and a big help in actual fact.“Simon is excited by the move and we are delighted to welcome him home. I’m amazed it’s the first time he will be a Sheffield asset in his successful career.”(SPEEDWAY 3)

IPSWICH will retain four riders from the 2014 season with Cameron Heeps, Gino Manzares, Rohan Tungate and Ritchie Hawkins all back with the Witches next year.The quartet join Danny King with two reserve places to fill – which means Adam Ellis, Morten Risager and Richie Worrall do not feature in the plans at Foxhall.Co-promoter Chris Louis said: “I said at the end of this season that they had all been a pleasure to work with and that I didn't want to get rid of any of them but as always the team-building limit has an impact on who you can fit in. “I really want to ‘see it through’ with three of the returnees, Rohan, Cam and Gino, as I brought them all here to Ipswich but I have warned all three that they need to ‘knuckle down, be professional and work hard’ for the whole season next year!.“They are great talents and I want to continue with these guys. I did say when I took Ipswich into the Premier League I wanted to build a team to move back into the Elite League and nothing has changed on that front.”

(SPEEDWAY 4)

FORMER World No.2 Andreas Jonsson will make a welcome return to the Elite League next season with Lakeside.The Swedish star last rode in the UK for the Hammers in 2008, and he will be joined at Purfleet by Danish youngster Mikkel Bech who topped the club’s averages this year but did not see out the full campaign.Promoter Jon Cook said: “To have a true No.1 was our aim but for that rider to be AJ is simply a dream come true for everyone at the Club.“AJ's planning ahead of making this decision has been as precise and professional as one would expect. He has a sponsor here in Hagon Shocks, whose support we also enjoy and I thank Martin (Hagon) for his role in making this happen.“When Mikkel and I chatted last weekend it was clear we both felt that the many positives of last year made a return in both our best interests. He was the star of our early season and without doubt when he wasn't around we were lacking that spark. “He's a winner and we need those guys in our team if we aren't to fade away at the end of another season. We now have a top two to be envied by any club in the Elite League and two true stars of World speedway racing in the colours of the Vortex Hammers. It’s a great day for all at the Club.”

(SPEEDWAY 5)

WORKINGTON have snapped up Nicki Barrett in a loan deal from Berwick which will see him occupying one of the Comets’ reserve berths next season.Barrett, who spent the second half of the 2014 campaign with Peterborough, becomes the third Dane to be signed at Derwent Park joining Rene Bach and Kenneth Hansen.Manager Tony Jackson said: “When he visited Derwent Park with the Panthers last season he proved to be very impressive at reserve and he clearly enjoyed the track.“As a result, when we were looking at putting the team together for next season he was a rider that we were obviously interested in, especially on his sub-four point average where he will slot in at reserve. Then, when we spoke with Nicki he was very keen to join us so it has worked out well all round.”

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COVENTRY have made Darryl Ritchings the first signing for their National League team next season.The Swindon asset will be making his comeback to the sport after missing almost the entire 2014 campaign due to an horrific crash in the first meeting of the season at Blunsdon this year.Coventry boss Laurence Rogers said: “Darryl is desperate to bounce back, he’s practicing hard and he’s in the gym at 7am. He’s super-keen with a really supportive family, and I think in some people’s thinking he’s a forgotten man – but I’ve seen the videos of him when he hired the Isle of Wight and he looked back to his best.“Alun Rossiter (Swindon promoter) gave permission very quickly for us to talk to him, so our thanks to him for that, and then it was only a few minutes for him to agree to come and ride for the Storm.”


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