STAR MAN STEVIE IN SHOCK RETURN
STEVE WORRALL is to make a dramatic comeback in Monday’s Sports Insure British Final at Belle Vue (7.30).
Worrall has made himself available to race just over two months since suffering a broken leg - and he’s got the nod.
Following a string of high profile injuries in recent weeks - Ben Barker, Stefan Nielsen and Edward Kennett have all been ruled out - Worrall has now been handed his opportunity.
Everyone in British Speedway would like to wish the injured trio all the very best.
Event organisers say the decision has been taken in recognition of Worrall’s runners-up spot last year and the fact he represented GB in the World Cup Final.
It’s a move which adds spice to the meeting as he is a Belle Vue rider as well as doubling up with Championship Scunthorpe.
Wolverhampton and Newcastle man Ashley Morris has also been called up with talented youngsters Jack Smith and Kyle Bickley filling the reserve spots.
GREAT Britain lead the Speedway of Nations Final after a sensational performance in the first leg at Wroclaw on Friday.
With Tai Woffinden scoring a fabulous 18-point maximum and young gun Robert Lambert adding seven, GB finished two points clear of Russia and five ahead of third-placed Denmark – with a nine-point gap over the chasing pack.
The Final concludes at the same venue tonight (Saturday) with the top three nations after 21 heats progressing to the decisive knockout stages.
Team boss Alun Rossiter said: “It’s a great day for Great Britain, but it’s only half-time. We’re in a great position but our feet are firmly on the ground and anything can happen on Saturday.
“I thought we could be in a mix but I suppose I’d be a liar if I’d really thought we would finish top. But as I keep saying, we’ve got another big meeting to come.
“Tai has been fantastic. We’ve all got back together, we’re all working together as a team under the new set-up, and it’s so far so good.
“Robert was outstanding as well. We gave Craig (Cook) a go before reverting to Robert but we’ve got to remember it’s a team event, it’s not just about individuals and a lot of effort has gone into this from everyone involved.”
IN-FORM Adam Ellis is hoping to spring a surprise in the British Final at Belle Vue on Monday.
The Swindon and Lakeside racer has been piling up the points in both Premiership and Championship this season, and wants to take that form into the showpiece meeting.
Ellis said: “I don’t have any targets in mind, it would be nice to just go out, enjoy it and try to get a good result.
“We will just have to see how it goes in the build-up and take it from there. I will have a pretty relaxed outlook and hopefully, that will help me.
“It is the first time I have got through. I did it the hard way, I made it difficult for myself. This is one you look forward to though, it will be a big meeting and I would like to do well.”
WORKINGTON secured their place in the semi-final stages of the Championship Shield with a race win from Nicolai Klindt in the last heat of their final group match at Edinburgh last night.
The Comets went to Armadale needing to avoid defeat in order to overhaul Glasgow and top the group, which they did by coming back from a six-point deficit to pull off a 46-44 victory.
Klindt (11) got the better of Monarchs’ top men Erik Riss (13) and Ricky Wells (10+1) after Dan Bewley and Mason Campton had set things up with a 5-1 in Heat 14.
Delighted Workington boss Tony Jackson said: “That was an incredible result for us at a track where our recent results have been far from good.
“After failing to win at home to Glasgow last Saturday we made it hard for ourselves, but we knew we still had a chance as we have proved that we can do it on the road already this season.
“Everyone pulled together and the team spirit was fantastic throughout in what was an excellent match, with no controversy or bad luck for either side, and we just kept plugging away to level the scores before finally edging ahead in heat 14.
“I am so proud of the team for getting this result against the odds and to end the group stages unbeaten in our six matches is a superb achievement.”
Edinburgh boss Alex Harkess said: “That was very poor on our part and our lower order riders are not improving as we were hoping they would. Indeed not many of our riders got pass marks tonight.
“But Workington deserve credit as they have been good throughout the qualifying stages.”
GLASGOW edged out Peterborough 47-43 in a tense last-heat decider at Ashfield on Friday.
There were never more than two points between the sides prior to Heat 15, in which home duo Richie Worrall and Chris Harris secured a 5-1 over Scott Nicholls and Bradley Wilson-Dean.
Harris (10+1), Worrall (10) and Claus Vissing (10) all scored double figures for the Tigers with Nicholls on 13 and Wilson-Dean on 10 for the Panthers, who secured a league point from the meeting.
Harris said: “Towards the end we had good speed and some good races with Scott.
"I'm disappointed he beat me in that one ride in heat 11 but I managed to get him in the other two.
"It was a great meeting and when it came down to heat 15, luckily me and Richie managed to get our noses in front to get the win.
"There was good racing tonight. The track is getting better every week we ride on it, it's producing good action, but the only problem is that away teams love it as well.
Peterborough boss Carl Johnson said: “It was a good point for us, although I certainly feel we could have ended up with more.
“We wanted at least a point from the meeting and that’s what we got, so we have to be happy overall despite losing out in Heat 15 when they had choice of gates.
“There were some really good performances, Scott and Bradley especially and also Simon (Lambert) chipping in with paid ten, and Tofty (Michael Palm Toft) got things together at the end, so it was a good team performance in the end and a fully deserved point.”
SUNTHORPE defeated Newcastle 50-40 at the Eddie Wright Raceway – with a last-heat puncture denying the Diamonds a league point.
Jake Allen secured the Scorpions’ victory by passing both Ashley Morris and Carl Wilkinson in Heat 14, but Tero Aarnio looked set to give the visitors some reward until being forced out of Heat 15 when leading.
Allen scored 16+1 for the hosts with stand-in skipper Jason Garrity adding 11 and Josh Auty 10+2, whilst Aarnio was top scorer for the Diamonds on nine.
Garrity said: “Newcastle gave us a tough meeting, but we put in a good team performance and we won. That’s what it’s all about, winning the meeting and taking all the points available – it doesn’t really matter how much we win by.
“My arm is now a lot better. By my last ride, it was feeling a bit sore, but I wasn’t going to let it beat me.
“I’m a man of my word, and when I signed my contract with Scunthorpe, I committed to ride in as many meetings as I could. I probably shouldn’t have done Glasgow last week, but I am dedicated to this club.”
Diamonds boss George English said: “We put in a decently spirited performance, and while we didn't get the win six of our seven lads got wins or paid wins - and on an away track that still highlights a good strength-in-depth core that could reap deserved rewards in our remaining matches this season.
“We really deserved a point at least, and had it not been for that confounded puncture hitting Tero in Heat 15 we would have got our just deserts.
“But it was good to see Stuart Robson back on a bike and to be honest looking like he had never been off one for so long.”
PLYMOUTH gained a 54-36 win over the Isle of Wight in the National League at the St Boniface Arena on Friday.
Skipper Adam Roynon led the way for the Devils with a 16-point haul from six rides, whilst reserve Richard Andrews dropped just one point from five rides (14) and Henry Atkins added 12+2.
The Warriors’ scoring was dominated by Ben Morley, who won three races on his way to 13 points, and Ben Hopwood who took the flag twice in a 12-point total.
BERWICK can move top of the Championship if they avoid defeat at home to Redcar tonight (Saturday).
The Bandits boast a 100 per cent record with four wins out of four at Shielfield Park, and are one of four clubs currently on 13 league points.
Berwick name a full-strength line-up whilst Ty Proctor again stands in for the injured Ben Barker at No.1 for the Bears.
STOKE co-manager Adam Isherwood knows the visit of Mildenhall to Loomer Road tonight (Saturday) represents a tough test for his side.
The Potters have Rob Shuttleworth back after time out with injury and work commitments, and include Josh Embleton at reserve for the injured William O’Keefe.
The Fen Tigers are without recent returnee Danny Halsey and operate rider-replacement, but are otherwise at full strength.
Isherwood said: “We will need to be on our toes early on in this meeting as Mildenhall are a very good team and will be difficult to beat.
“If we can get our noses in front in the opening heats then hopefully we can then push on and win, but we will certainly need to be on our mettle on Saturday.
“All the lads are up for this meeting as we look to bounce back after the defeat against Kent and we will hopefully get the result we want.”
Mildenhall promoter Kevin Jolly said: “We will give Stoke every respect as they are a well balanced team with riders who go very well at their home track - having said that, if we are serious in our ambitions this season we must be looking to win Saturday’s meeting.
“Last season we struggled at Stoke and failed to win there in three attempts so we are fully aware of the task facing us, but our team make-up is much better this season and I am confident of success.”
Meanwhile Eastbourne host Plymouth in the National Trophy with a bumper 27-race schedule planned at Arlington.
There are pre-meeting junior races from 7pm in 150cc and 250cc classes, whilst after the main match six riders will compete for the Bob Radford Memorial Trophy in an event run by Southern Development League club Reading.
SATURDAY JUNE 9:
CHAMPIONSHIP: Berwick v Redcar 7pm
TRAVEL PLUS NATIONAL LEAGUE: Stoke v Mildenhall 7pm
NATIONAL TROPHY: Eastbourne v Plymouth 7.30
SUNDAY JUNE 10:
CHAMPIONSHIP: Peterborough v Glasgow 5pm
NATIONAL TROPHY: Coventry v Cradley 3pm
MONDAY JUNE 11:
BRITISH FINAL: Belle Vue 7.30
NATIONAL TROPHY: Kent v Eastbourne 6.30
Results Friday June 8, 2018;
FIM MONSTER ENERGY SPEEDWAY OF NATIONS - FINAL, 1st leg, Wroclaw, Poland
1 Great Britain 25 (Tai Woffinden 18, Robert Lambert 7, Craig Cook 0)
2 Russia 23 (Artem Laguta 17, Emil Sayfutdinov 6, Gleb Chugunov 0)
3 Denmark 20 (Michael Jepsen Jensen 12, Kenneth Bjerre 8)
4 Sweden 16 (Fredrik Lindgren 13, Antonio Lindback 3)
5 Australia 15 (Jason Doyle 13, Max Fricke 2)
6 Poland 15 (Maciej Janowski 9, Patryk Dudek 3, Maksym Drabik 3)
7 Germany 12 (Martin Smolinski 11, Michael Hartel 1, Kai Huckenbeck 0)
(Scores carry over to Saturday’s deciding 2nd leg at Wroclaw, Poland)
Glasgow 47 (Chris Harris 10+1)
Peterborough 43 (Scott Nicholls 13)
Championship points: Glasgow 3 Peterborough 1
Scunthorpe 50 (Jake Allen 16+1)
Newcastle 40 (Tero Aarnio 9)
Championship points: Scunthorpe 3 Newcastle 0
Edinburgh 44 (Erik Riss 13)
Workington 46 (Nicolai Klindt 11)
Championship Shield points: Edinburgh 0 Workington 3
TRAVEL PLUS NATIONAL LEAGUE
Plymouth 54 (Adam Roynon 16)
Isle of Wight 36 (Ben Morley 13)
National League points: Plymouth 3 Isle of Wight 0