SPEEDWAY STAR NEWSDESK
Watch out for Ryan
WOLVERHAMPTON boss Peter Adams reckons flying Ryan Douglas could be this year’s Premiership surprise package. The Australian has been in blistering form down under, winning numerous individual meetings over the past couple of months.
Now Adams hopes he can deliver similar performances for the Parrys International Wolves and feels there are plenty of reasons to be optimistic for the 28-year-old.
“Well Ryan Douglas has enjoyed a great time racing back in Australia,” Adams said.
“He’s picked up some terrific results and his confidence should be of a very high level because of those I should imagine.
“The challenge for Ryan now is to bring that form with him into his league racing in the UK and for me there’s no reason why he can’t.
“It took him a one or two meetings to get settled down when we signed him part way through the 2019 season, but he showed us all at Wolverhampton what he is capable of in the top league.
“When you mix those demonstrations of capability with the momentum he should have behind him from his summer back home, we could well see an even more improved rider in 2021.
“He’s not a Rising Star in terms of the new programme introduced into British speedway, but he is very much a rider who is threatening to show an excitingly dangerous level of progression in 2021.
“If he can hit the ground running and get his season off to a good start, then for me Dougy could well be one of the most improved riders in the top division this year.”
SEVEN-TIME Danish Champion NielsKristian Iversen’s rotten run of injuries continues after he suffered a double fracture of his shoulder blade on Monday.
The former Peterborough rider crashed in Heat 1 of Tarnow’s Polish First Division match with Gdansk – his club debut and first appearance in Poland’s second tier since 2005.
Iversen narrowly lost out in an epic battle for second with Gdansk rider Jakub Jamrog on the run to the line, before the pair tangled after the chequered flag.
Both ended up in the firstbend fence and, while Jamrog was unhurt in the collision, Iversen complained of shoulder pain and withdrew from the meeting to undergo hospital checks.
Posting on their official website, Tarnow confirmed their star signing faces a spell out of action: “After detailed research in a hospital in Tarnow, it turned out that the Unia Tarnow rider had broken his shoulder blade in two places. Now the Dane has a few weeks’ break in starts.”
The news comes as a bitter blow to Iversen, whose 2020 season was severely disrupted by injuries.
He suffered shoulder damage in a pre-season spill with Gorzow team-mate Bartosz Zmarzlik last June, ruling him out of the club’s opening Ekstraliga matches.
Iversen then needed surgery after breaking his hand on his first home appearance of the season against Lublin in August, before his season was ended by broken ribs suffered in the Ekstraliga play-off semi-final, second leg at home to Wroclaw on October 4.
He has a concerning recent history with shoulder problems, having seen his 2017 campaign ended by a broken shoulder, which required surgery the following season.
With Tarnow unveiling Iversen as their marquee signing in their quest to gain Ekstraliga promotion, his absence also comes as a hammer-blow to the club, as well as his Swedish side Indianerna and Danish team Esbjerg if he faces a lengthy spell out of action.
Report: PAUL BURBIDGE
Determined Claus G
UTTED Claus Vissing has vowed he “will be back” in the UK after the shock of being released by Newcastle on the eve of the season.
The Diamonds revealed over the weekend that they couldn’t afford the popular Danish No. 1 with just weeks before the campaign is due to kick off. Naturally Vissing was devastated with the news but remained defiant that he will still get on track when a team place becomes available.
He said: “It’s fair enough that they are telling me they don’t have the money to pay my wages and don’t want to start the season and not pay me. In that way it’s fair play.
“Another way is that they should have seen that coming months ago. So at least I had a chance to sort something else out.
“You start to get yourself ready for the season. It’s not only me but I have my mechanic who was ready to go as well, it’s a lot of people you are disappointing. It’s the way it is. It’s just speedway.
“I can’t blame them for telling the truth that they don’t have money to pay a No. 1 rider, they need to scrub the payment and get away with what they have and get a middle-ranged rider instead of a No. 1.
“But it’s just the wrong time of the year to do that. You can do that early in December and think it’s going to be too expensive, let’s go a little bit less.”
Grindsted-born Vissing, 31, won his last six races in official competition in the UK for Glasgow in the Championship Play-Offs Grand Final in October 2019 - including a maximum in the second leg at Ashfield.
He has issued a “don’t forget about me” to UK promoters when the season gets underway. With injuries part and parcel of the sport’s DNA, his chance will surely arise at some stage of 2021.
For now he will continue to race in Denmark. He added: “At the moment I’m in the workshop getting my bikes ready for practice on Wednesday. I ride for Brovst. Then I have a test meeting in Denmark on Friday.
“I’ve certainly not given up on the UK. The hardest thing is that I thought people would think I’m not coming over because of the corona situation. Far from it.
“My phone is on and as soon as I get the call I will be back for a UK team.”
8 COPPERGATE MEWS, BRIGHTON ROAD,
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VOLUME 70 NUMBER 6
2 speedway star April 10, 2021