SPEEDWAY News and Fixtures

(SPEEDWAY 1 – FRIDAY REVIEW)

COVENTRY collected a 52-40 win over local rivals Leicester in the second leg of the East Midlands Bowl – although that wasn’t enough to prevent the Lions from taking the trophy on aggregate.The tie was almost out of range after Leicester’s 63-27 victory at home although the Bees made a sharp start in the return with three 5-1s in the first five races, and the Lions weren’t helped by the withdrawal of Mikkel Michelsen with a foot injury after a Heat 1 incident.An impressive display from Grzegorz Walasek, who won his first four races, helped keep the visitors in contention, and the Pole only lost his maximum when overtaken by Coventry top-scorer Hans Andersen (12+1) and Chris Harris in Heat 15 – whilst home reserves James Sarjeant and Jason Garrity scored 18 (paid 21) between them.Andersen said: “It was only my third time on the bike this season and I felt pretty good. Terry (Chrabaszcz) hasn’t had a lot of time to do the track, but even the starts were so good and all credit to him because the job he’s done is amazing.“It’s good to get a win after last Sunday, and I think our team looks pretty solid. It’s a difficult time for Jakub (Jamrog) at the moment, he needs to adapt to the tracks, and it’s so early in the season.”Lions boss Norrie Allan said: “We were certainly on the back foot after losing Mikkel before even a lap had even been completed but the team rallied round, and whilst we never threatened to win the meeting at the same time we kept the difference in points close on the night. “We knew that Coventry would be a much different proposition at Brandon and so it proved. It was a great turn-out of our fans and they were right behind the team and I am pleased that for them we won the trophy but my main concern at the moment is Mikkel.”The Remembering #Rico Spring Classic at Lakeside ended in a 45-45 draw as riders and supporters paid tribute to Lee Richardson.Edward Kennett, Kim Nilsson and Richard Lawson all hit double-figures (10+1) for the Hammers, whilst Rory Schlein piled up 14 for the Lee’s All Stars line-up.There was also a notable return to the shale for double British Champion and Sky Sports pundit Kelvin Tatum, racing on one of his former home tracks.Tatum, now aged 51 and having last raced domestically in 2004, took his place in the All Stars line-up and collected an impressive seven (paid nine) to be the highest-scoring reserve on the night.Theo Pijper’s Testimonial at Edinburgh resulted in victory for home man Sam Masters, who won the Final from the back over Kevin Doolan to take the top prize.Masters had led the qualifying scores with a 12-point maximum, whilst new Glasgow signing Aaron Summers scored eleven before finishing third in the Final.Pijper meanwhile, who will start the season for Scunthorpe, scored eight which was enough for a place in the Final where he finished fourth.(SPEEDWAY 2 - SATURDAY PREVIEW)

THE Elite League’s top stars will be on show at Leicester on Saturday in the first Major Event of the 2015 season.Troy Batchelor defends his Elite League Riders’ Championship crown at the Jordan Road Surfacing Stadium, which stages the event for the first time.Each of the eight clubs are represented by two riders, and last year’s top four – Batchelor, Maciej Janowski, home man Jason Doyle and Matej Zagar – are all back in the field this season.ELRC LINE-UP: 1. Mikkel Bech (Lakeside), 2. Niels-Kristian Iversen (King’s Lynn), 3. Bjarne Pedersen (Leicester), 4. Kenneth Bjerre (King’s Lynn), 5. Matej Zagar (Belle Vue), 6. Scott Nicholls (Belle Vue), 7. Andreas Jonsson (Lakeside), 8. Jason Doyle (Leicester), 9. Chris Holder (Poole), 10. Freddie Lindgren (Wolverhampton), 11. Troy Batchelor (Swindon), 12. Chris Harris (Coventry), 13. Maciej Janowski (Poole), 14. Nick Morris (Swindon), 15. Hans Andersen (Coventry), 16. Jacob Thorssell (Wolverhampton).Meanwhile, Premier League Cup action gets underway at Hoddesdon as Rye House host Ipswich in the first fixture of the southern group.New signings Nikolaj Busk Jakobsen and Robin Aspegren make their Rockets debuts whilst Anders Mellgren and Kasper Lykke return after previous spells with the club.Skipper Edward Kennett said: “I’m really happy with the team we’ve put together, and with the new boys coming in. The rest of us can improve too, which is the key to success.“Last season was a difficult one, with everything going downhill after such a bright start with that opening night away victory at Peterborough. But we’ve forgotten about it now - it’s over. This is a fresh start. I am sure all the boys will do well. We want to start winning as early as we can to build up that early momentum.”

(SPEEDWAY 3)

SWINDON have unveiled exciting plans which will see them move into a new stadium for the 2016 campaign.Stadium owners Gaming International announced the plans for the new Abbey Stadium, located adjacent to the current stadium on the site of the current Blunsdon market, with work on the state-of-the-art venue to commence within the next 10 weeks allowing the Robins to move into their new home in time for the start of next season.Swindon co-promoter Alun Rossiter said: “We’ll definitely be in a new stadium for 2016 which is great news for everyone connected with the club. There is a tinge of sadness for someone like myself who has been around the old track for such a long time, but we have to move with the times.“It’s going to be a new era for the club, it’s going to be great for us to promote the club, get more sponsors on board and offer excellent hospitality packages. Having a new, state-of-the-art stadium is only going to improve things for the club.”

(SPEEDWAY 4)

PETERBOROUGH have completed a short-term swoop for Danish star Michael Palm-Toft.The 24 year-old has been snapped up as a replacement for injury victim Adam Roynon for at least the next 28 days, and will make his Panthers debut when they entertain Somerset in a League Cup clash at the East of England Showground on Sunday.Co-promoter Ged Rathbone said: “We have done our homework and received nothing but good reports about Michael. This is a calculated move on our part and hopefully our fans will be excited by the signing.“We’re thankful to Michael for needing no persuasion to come in at such short notice. I must also place on record my thanks to Scunthorpe promoter Rob Godfrey for allowing us to do a deal with Michael.”(SPEEDWAY 5)

REDCAR boss Jitendra Duffill has called for patience ahead of the new Premier League season – but is happy with the potential within the Bears’ team.The Teesside outfit were forced into a late change to their plans, bringing Ben Morley into the side to replace Richard Hall in a move which also alters their initial riding order.Duffill said: “I believe we have a competitive team but I accept that we certainly won't be rated amongst the bookies favourites at the start of the year. We lost a trump card when Jan (Graversen) moved into the main body of the team and losing Richard before the season started was a big blow and brings back memories of 2014 when we lost Kozza Smith due to Visa issues.“We have two very inexperienced reserves and we will have to be patient with them as they find their feet, but I do believe that both have a lot of potential and they will do a good job for us if we give them the support and time they need.”

(SPEEDWAY 6)

EASTBOURNE have announced IT First as their main team sponsors for the 2015 National League campaign. IT First will be known to many sports fans in Sussex and beyond as former shirt sponsors of Championship football team Brighton and Hove Albion FC.Eagles Chairman Martin Dugard, said: “This is a very valuable sponsorship for the club and we have already benefited hugely from the company’s input. “They have opened our eyes to the possibilities we have with the team and the stadium and there’s no doubt IT First has already made its mark.”(FIXTURES)

SATURDAY MARCH 21:ELITE LEAGUE RIDERS’ CHAMPIONSHIP: Leicester 7.30LEAGUE CUP: Rye House v Ipswich 7pm

SUNDAY MARCH 22:LEAGUE CUP: Peterborough v Somerset 1pmRICKY ASHWORTH BENEFIT: Sheffield 5pm

MONDAY MARCH 23:BANKS’S OLYMPIQUE CLASSIC: Wolverhampton 7.30


Related Motorsport Articles

83,409 articles