The penultimate track action of the season at Wightlink Warriors Smallbrook base in Ryde this Thursday (1 September) sees the second attempt to host the NORA British Upright Speedway Championship sponsored by Freelance Installations.
The first staging on 11th August latest only six races before a serious collision between Tim Curnock and Chris Mackett resulted in the air ambulance being summoned to transport the latter to hospital with the meeting being abandoned quite understandably.
The latest news on Mackett is that he remains in hospital in Southampton.
This week’s re-run will see most of the original field return to chase this new championship, however after consultation with the twelve available riders it has been agreed that races will run over a three-lap duration with cumulative points after four outings being used to determine C, B & A finalists.
With some of the original finalists unable to make the re-staging date, the door has opened to a few new faces to fill the spaces and one name in particular will excite supporters as it has been confirmed that former Island number one Nick Simmons has agreed to compete having enjoyed some demonstration outings earlier in the season.
Supporting the Upright Championship meeting will another four heats of ‘Blast From The Past’ where the older machines of yesteryear get a full-blown competitive workout.
Wightlink Warriors co-owner Barry Bishop was in mellow mood as he said, “This week’s meeting is somewhat bittersweet for me, and I would suggest many others. Whilst we are delighted to have been able to adjust our calendar to stage a re-run of the Upright Championship, we do it fully aware that Chris is still in hospital receiving medical care. I hope we may be able to give an update on Thursday during the meeting.
I’m sure we will all have Chris in our thoughts as we enjoy the racing and as we celebrate with the Champion at the end of the evening”.
The expected line-up in draw order for the NORA British Upright Championship:
Mark Simmonds, Darren Phillips, Roy Miller, Dean Felton, Nick Simmons, Graham Knowler, Giles Dismore, Nigel Coates, Keith Cornell, Alex Chadd (pictured), Wayne Broadhurst, Ben Phillips.
As usual the gates at Smallbrook will open at 5.15 pm, fans can listen to the rider briefing at 5.45 pm before the youth section riders compete in their demonstration races around ten-past-six. The rider parade at 6.45 pm. will precede the main event at 7.00 pm. Drinks and refreshments will be available from either The Retreat snack bar or in The Premier Lounge throughout.
Image courtesy of Ian Groves / Sportography