THE Isle of Wight have named Adam Portwood as their first signing for the 2018 National League campaign.
The 22-year-old impressed during an extended spell with the Warriors this term and returns to Smallbrook at reserve on a 3.83 starting average.
Team manager Jackie Vatcher said: “The secret behind a successful side is riders continually improving their averages and helping to build team spirit.
“Last season, the Warriors struggled on track for many different reasons and Adam's introduction to the team was a massive boost, as he was great for team spirit, and had the experience to win races.
“2018 will be a big year for Adam; we expect him to achieve his targets and finish in the main body of the team.”
BUXTON have promoted Josh Moss to the role of team manager for the 2018 National League season.
The 18-year-old, who is part of Stockport County FC’s Academy, has followed his family with involvement in the Hitmen, and stood in for previous boss Jason Pipe on occasions in recent years.
Moss said: “Age is just a number and won’t affect my capabilities as a team manager because I really have been around the sport all of my life and have a lot of experience even though I’m only 18 years old.
“I think a lot of people feel that being a team manager is a difficult job that takes up a lot of time, but if you enjoy doing something it’s a pleasure and not a chore and speedway is something I enjoy being involved with.
“I’m looking to get some young lads in for 2018 and give them the experience of racing, and hopefully we can bring a youthful look for the club next season both on and off the track.”
IPSWICH promoter Chris Louis says the revised SGB Championship fixture schedule will be good for his club next year.
The Witches will renew rivalries with Lakeside for the first time since 2010, and the clubs will be involved in the same group as the League Cup competition returns.
Louis said: “It is always good to have more clubs rather than less and we have gained Lakeside as a local derby so that is fantastic.
“I am happy with the League Cup returning and although it is only a small regionalised group, going three or four times if you qualify for the latter stages of competitions to Scotland and Workington is expensive and too expensive for fans.
“We are trying to localise as much as we can for fans so that they are happy to travel, and we are trying to make everything as sensible as possible for the fans.”
BERWICK co-owner Scott Courtney has given last weekend’s BSPA AGM a major thumbs-up as 2018 planning commences in earnest.
Courtney and his colleagues will be going into their second season in charge at Shielfield Park – and will now be looking to build on a positive end to the SGB Championship campaign this year.
He said: “It was a very productive few days’ work - hard work, but extremely positive as the sport has come together to make sure our future is on the up.
“The measures brought in are only to the good and we cannot wait to get team building underway at Berwick for what is sure to be a top-class 2018!
“Our next task as a club is to get our heads together and work out the best seven men to represent our club on track once the new SGB Championship season gets underway in March next year.”
LEICESTER co-promoter Neil Machin says a decision over the club’s race-night will be taken after discussions with their SGB Premiership rivals.
The Lions will move off their previous Saturdays in accordance with the new policy of fixed race-nights in the top flight, but Machin admits he has no particular preference over which of the alternatives they switch to.
He said: “We’ll try and stick (completely) to a Monday or a Wednesday but we are going to discuss this with other clubs who don’t have the luxury of stadium availability whenever they want.
“We’re very fortunate at Leicester we can race any day of the week so Monday or Wednesday is no problem.
“I think four clubs should designate Wednesday and four Monday – I’m happy to accommodate either.”