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In the news: “Yes it’s a speedway track and yes we’re Belle Vue Speedway, but the r

KK wants back in

COVENTRY star Krzysztof Kasprzak is setting his sights on a swift Speedway Grand Prix return, despite crashing out of the series after a nightmare 2015 season.

KK went from second in the 2014 World Championship to 15th last year after suffering a catastrophic loss of form.

But the Leszno-born man isn’t in the mood to mope or dwell on what went wrong. He’s already focused on earning his SGP spot back.

He said: “I’ll go to the SGP qualifiers this year. I want to get back into the GP quickly because my plan in the future is to be World Champion. I’ve been second, so I want to be World Champion one year. Last year was just a bad season. Everyone has some bad times.”

MANCHESTER City Council and BV Arena Limited have confirmed the intention to carry out urgent repair works to a number of sections of the brand new circuit at the National Speedway Stadium.

The decision follows investigations into defects in the third and fourth turns which came to light due to recent inclement weather and which has rendered the track surface unsuitable for racing.

Whilst it is disappointing to have to cancel further events, the priority, say both the Council and Belle Vue Speedway, is to ensure the safety of the riders and also the quality of the racing for spectators.

They are however confident the scheduled repair works will provide a permanent solution to the problems the stadium has experienced since the abandonment of the grand opening.

Aces ‘un myself, having worked nine years on this project to get it to this stage, it’s extremely disappointing what’s happened, not only for us as individuals but also for the club and the fans as well.

“We understand everyone’s frustration. But what I would say is that you’ve got to look at the facts behind what’s been going on.

“Yes it’s a speedway track and yes we’re Belle Vue Speedway, but the responsibility of constructing the track was completely out of our hands. We did not build it. The stadium contractors built the track.

“The only thing we did was provide the specification to which the track should’ve been built and sadly the construction wasn’t carried out in accordance with that specification as it should’ve been.

Kasprzak is keen to capitalise on his return to Britain after a twoyear absence. He hopes finding his form in the Elite League will get his international ambitions back on track.

And while some say the Elite isn’t as hard as it used to be, KK admits the new race format – introduced since he last raced regularly on these shores – is quite a challenge for heat leaders.

He said: “Now there’s a different programme in the Elite League and I’m always racing with good riders – No. 1, No. 3 and No. 5.

“It’s tough. Britain doesn’t look strong on paper, but it’s different on the track. Riders are very good because they have raced on these tracks for 10 or 15 years.

“But I need some more races. I’ve always liked Britain and I’m sure riding here will help me back into good form. It’s good time spent here. I’d only be practising in Poland.”

Kasprzak also has his eye on earning his place back in the Polish Speedway World Cup side. But he admits it’s down to team manager Marek Cieslak to judge if he has reached the standard required.

He said: “It’s the decision of the trainer. I always do my best and if I’m good for the World Cup, I’ll race. If I’m not, I won’t.”

Report: PAUL BURBIDGE

Belle Vue CEO David Gordon said: “Isolated repair works were immediately carried out by the stadium contractor on turns three and four following the cancellation of the grand opening.

“We can take criticism and we’ll always hold our hands up if we’re wrong. The responsible party will eventually have to face the consequences for what’s happened.”

“But the areas that were repaired showed higher levels of inconsistency in the sub-base of the track than was first thought, and ultimately it was revealed that the whole section was defective.

“For Chris (Morton) and

‘Unacceptable problems’ for Belle Vue boss David Gordon

The latest blow for Belle Vue came on Friday, when a mixture of inclement weather combined with these defective areas and caused their home match with Leicester to be postponed.

Said Gordon: “We’ve staged two practice sessions since the first wave of repairs, the most

Danish boss in U-turn?

ANDERS Secher could make a dramatic U-turn over his decision to quit as Danish national team manager after the Speedway Grand Prix qualification quarrel was resolved.

Secher resigned and riders were up in arms after former World Under-21 Champion Michael Jepsen Jensen was controversially granted a free pass for the international SGP qualifying quarter-finals.

But this has now been withdrawn after the Danish qualifier at Esbjerg was moved from this

Friday to Tuesday, allowing MJJ to take part without missing his Polish fixture for Gorzow on Friday.

Secher strongly objected to Jepsen Jensen being given favourable treatment over those riders missing British fixtures to fight for a shot at SGP qualification.

With the row resolved to his satisfaction, he admits he’d be happy to get back to work and help Speedway World Cup favourites Denmark go for gold at Manchester’s National Speedway Stadium.

He told Ekstra Bladet: “Given that the conflict is resolved, the reason behind my resignation is now gone. I have notified Jorgen Bitsch (DMU chairman) that I want to return as coach if a solution can be found. We’ll probably sit down at a table this week to see how things stand.

“I do not think I’m done with speedway. I still have something I can give. Speedway is such a big part of my life, so it will be weird if it does not have a place in future.”

Bitsch is open to Secher resuming his role. He told dr.dk: “It is not me who has slammed the door – it is Anders. My door is always open.

“Now we have this conflict resolved, and there’s a new day tomorrow. So let’s see what happens. I have always said that we have been satisfied with Anders Secher’s great work for the sport.”

Poole star Hans Andersen and Bjarne Pedersen held talks with Denmark’s Motor Union last week, with the riders and DMU agreeing to move the meeting. There will also be further discussions about the allocation of wild cards in future years.

There will still be five spots in the international rounds up for grabs on Tuesday, with the DMU holding one wild card place, which will be allocated after the Esbjerg meeting.

In a DMU press release, Bitsch confirmed he was pleased with the outcome of the summit. He said: “On the DMU’s behalf, we are very satisfied with the solution that was the result of a three-hour long meeting and detailed discussion of various options.

“It was important that we focused on the sport and not least the many fans that would have been disappointed if the meeting was cancelled.

“It is also positive that we have restored confidence between the riders and management, so that we can look forward to the season that is upon us, and also any changes for season 2017, which will be addressed soon.”

Report: PAUL BURBIDGE

2 speedway star April 16, 2016

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