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Saturday 18th April 2015
Newsletter Issue 73
Issue 73 of our newsletter is now available to download.

In this issue we have news, scores and photos from the Aces meetings against Leicester and the Colts meetings against Long Eaton, plus a round-up of all the latest news.

Click here to go to the newsletters page and download a copy

Saturday 18th April 2015
A Saturday Vue....with Matej Zagar

Speedway’s international calendar comes roaring back to the forefront of sport on Saturday as the 2015 FIM World Championships kicks off the first of twelve rounds on the continent.

Round One takes the series to the magnificent Stadion Narodowy in the Polish capital of Warsaw, the beating heart of a nation devoted to its beloved shale sport.

Tickets for the sell-out event were snapped up less than twelve hours after going on sale, with a crowd in excess of 55,000 spectators expected to descend on the city over the weekend.

Matej Zagar (CS)

Belle Vue No.1 Matej Zagar, who ranked 5th in last year’s series, says he’s “never felt better prepared” ahead of a GP season and is determined to make a strong start to his world title bid.

“At the moment I would say I’m as good as World Champion because everybody has zero points!” he jokes.

“I've never felt as ready as I am this year. I’ve spent a lot of time training over the winter and I’ve been working hard to prepare my kit, my bikes and my engines to be the best that they can be.

“There’s an old saying about poor preparation but I’m confident that everything I’ve done so far will give me the best chance of success, although until that first heat I won’t elaborate any further.

“Warsaw is a completely new game for me. There’s no purpose-built speedway stadium here but just because it’s a temporary track doesn’t mean I’ll approach it differently to any other meeting.

“Normally I quite like any new tracks that appear on the calendar because they present a fresh challenge for the entire field, and nobody goes into the meeting with a distinct advantage.

“Finland last year was a prime example in that respect because it proved to be a difficult night for everyone, and I know I spent the better part of the meeting trying to find a set-up that worked.

“At the end of the day, all of my hard work paid off and I won the meeting. It was an amazing feeling, my first GP victory and I’m hoping to rack up a few more this year!”

The super slick Slovenian is no stranger to a Grand Prix podium having collected one gold, four silvers and one bronze medal in the last twenty four rounds.

Matej Zagar (CS)

But the 32-year old insists that his results from previous years mean nothing given the unpredictable, “wide-open” nature of the beast from season to season.

“To be honest, at this stage, I’m not really focusing on which GP I’m most keen to get to or how many points I want to score in each round, I don’t want to crowd my thinking with that,” he said.

“Like I said before, everybody is on zero right now and the competition is wide open. There’s a lot of new faces on the scene this year and we’ve no idea what they’re going to bring to the series.

“There’s a long way to go between now and Melbourne. It’s twelve rounds and absolutely anything can happen from one week to the next.

“One of the key lesson I learned last year was that one or two bad races doesn't put you out of the game. I’m just going to do what I do best and race, it’s that simple."

Friday 17th April 2015
Nielsen in World U21 Qualifying
Stefan Nielsen is one of four British Riders selected to contest the FIM World Under-21 qualifying rounds next month.

Stefan will ride at Terenzano, Italy on May 30th.

Kyle Howarth, Ashley Morris and Josh Bates are the other British riders selected.

Friday 17th April 2015
Unfinished Business - Aces v Coventry Preview
As they prepare to meet Coventry for the first time this season, sparks of payback are sure to be flying from the Belle Vue side of the pits come Monday night.

The hosts have kept very much in mind the punishment dealt to them by the Buildbase Bees last season, particularly as they were the only club to defeat them on all four occasions they clashed.

But the battle on April 20th guarantees to be just as equally hard-fought, especially as the visitors boast three riders who are more than comfortable around Kirkmanshulme Lane.

Two of them, Hans Andersen and Chris Harris, formerly captained Belle Vue in 2010 and 2011 respectively while at the same time spearheaded the team as club No.1 during their tenure.

Matej Zagar & Craig Cook battle with Hans Andersen & Chris Harris during Aces v Coventry meeting last season  (IC)

But current Rentruck Aces captain Scott Nicholls refuses to single out any members of his former club as being more dangerous than others.

He said: "It was a frustrating start for us, missing out on those points by such a slim margin, but it's still early days in the season and every match is a new day.

"We pulled off a great victory against Leicester on Monday and all of the boys chipped in and did their job, and showed the kind of class they're capable of producing.

"The enthusiasm of the fans was brilliant and naturally they want to see more of the same.

"So it's important we keep that momentum going against Coventry next week.

"They're a solid, well-balanced team and they've really given us something to think about after their win at Poole on Wednesday.

"Of course Chris and Hans know Belle Vue very well, and Jason Garrity is their star reserve who caused us quite a few headaches last year.

"But let's be honest, you have to expect great riders like them to perform well at a track they're very familiar with.

"I don't see any of them as a bigger threat than their team mates, just as I don't see Coventry as any more of a threat to us than the other Elite League clubs.

"On paper we can easily match them and I see no reason why that shouldn't also be the case in practice.

"We just need to focus on our job, maintain that solidarity within the team and do whatever is necessary to get the win."

Belle Vue ‘Rentruck’ Aces
Matej Zagar; Max Fricke; Scott Nicholls (C); Craig Cook; Simon Stead; Steve Worrall; Stefan Nielsen

Coventry ‘Buildbase’ Bees
Hans Andersen; Stuart Robson TBC; Danny King; Joonas Kylmakorpi; Chris Harris (C); Jason Garrity; James Sarjeant

Tuesday 14th April 2015
Nielsen 3rd in British U21 Final
Stefan Nielsen has finished 3rd in the British Under-21 Final held at Coventry tonight.

Kyle Howarth won the meeting with Robert Lambert 2nd.

Final Result:
1. Kyle Howarth
2. Robert Lambert
3. Stefan Nielsen
4. Ashley Morris

Tuesday 14th April 2015
Lions Mauled by 'Ace' Performance
It was smiles all around for Belle Vue last night as they satisfied their taste for revenge with a convincing victory over the Leicester Lions, their first of the 2015 season.

The visitors left Manchester having suffered a vicious 55-37 mauling by their hosts despite tracking circuit experts Kyle Howarth and Rory Schlein amongst their guest riders.

A solid team performance from one to seven put the Rentruck Aces firmly in control of the meeting almost immediately, with not one of the home riders failing to score all evening.

Aces Captain Scott Nicholls leads Leicester's Captain Jason Doyle  (IC)

Captain Scott Nicholls once again stole the show with an almost perfect 13+1 tally that saw him top score for Belle Vue for the fourth time in as many matches.

Team manager Mark Lemon was “delighted” to see the potential within his squad starting to shine through and states their victory tonight is a marker on which to build.

He said: “Getting off to a strong start at home was very important. The pressure was on after such a busy, pointless week and to come away with maximum points is just what the doctor ordered.

“On a personal level I feel a lot more comfortable after watching the boys tonight and hopefully they will be feeling a bit more relaxed after such a frustrating week.

“There was a good vibe around the pits going into the meeting and everyone seemed to gel together really well, and nobody finished the night having failed to score which was brilliant.

“I was particularly pleased to see Craig have such a good meeting. He’ll be the first to admit his performance last week wasn’t up to his usual high standard, but he delivered the goods tonight.

“He's got a tough job in front of him and sometimes the anxiety levels can get the better of you, but he handled himself really well and proved to everyone the kind of quality he brings to the team.

“What’s done is done and you can’t change the past, and I think everyone is just relieved to have got this first home match out of the way in such a successful manner.

“We're in the middle of April and it's our first time racing on our own track which is slightly unusual but to see these guys perform tonight, you wouldn’t think that was the case.

“It was a very attractive scoreline and I’m sure it’ll do wonders for our confidence ahead of our match against Coventry next week. It’s a positive that we can, and will, build upon.”

Celebrations for the home team were slightly marred by the withdrawal of Grzegorz Walasek from the meeting after the Polish veteran suffered a nasty crash in his second ride.

The 38-year old suffered a suspected fracture to his left hand after clipping his team mate’s back wheel and colliding with the turn two safety fence. His loss seemed to seal the Lions’ fate.

Lemon reflected: “Speedway is a dangerous sport and of course we wish Grzegorz well but in the same breath our boys were able to capitalise on the Lions’ misfortune of having to withdraw him.

“I couldn’t be prouder of the guys than I am right now and I couldn’t ask for a better way to kick off the campaign at home than to have what I would consider a smooth meeting.”

The Belle Vue management would also like to wish absent Lions rider Bjarne Pedersen a speedy recovery from illness, and hope that he able to take his place in the Leicester team in the very near future.

Belle Vue 'Rentruck' Aces
Scott Nicholls (C) 13+1, Matej Zagar 10+1, Max Fricke 9+1, Craig Cook 9+1, Simon Stead 6+1, Steve Worrall 5+2, Stefan Nielsen 3+1

Leicester Lions
Kyle Howarth 12 (G), Josh Auty 9+1, Jason Doyle (C) 8, Szymon Wozniak 4, Rory Schlein 2+1 (G), Simon Lambert 1+1, Grzegorz Walasek 1

Click here for the full scoresheet

Saturday 11th April 2015
Leicester 50 Aces 40
The Belle Vue 'Rentruck' Aces have lost their meeting away at Leicester tonight 50-40.

LEICESTER 50: Jason Doyle 13, Grzegorz Walasek 11+3, Szymon Wozniak 8+1, Robert Lambert 6+2, Bjarne Pedersen 4+2, Josh Auty 4+1, Simon Lambert 4.

BELLE VUE 40: Scott Nicholls 13, Steve Worrall 11, Max Fricke 7+1, Richie Worrall 6, Stefan Nielsen 2+1, Simon Stead 1+1, Matej Zagar R/R.

Elite League points: Leicester 3 Belle Vue 0

Click here for the full scoresheet

Saturday 11th April 2015
Into the Den - Leicester v Aces

A busy week of racing for Belle Vue took on a more hectic guise in the last couple of days as the club crossed paths with one of British Speedway’s greatest headaches: fixture clashes.

The Rentruck Aces will be missing three key members of their usual squad when they journey south to the the Lions’ home at the Jordan Road Surfacing Stadium this afternoon.

Craig Cook has been recalled to his Premier League duties for parent club Edinburgh as the Monarchs prepare to take on the Berwick Bandits at their Shielfield Park home.

To compensate the Aces will utilise the guest facility and have called on the services of club asset Richie Worrall, twin brother of Steve, following a series of impressive displays for Somerset.

World No.5 Matej Zagar is also indisposed due to a fixture clash with the Slovenian National Championships in his homeland, with round two set to get underway at Lendava this evening.

Having exhausted their options as far as a guest is concerned the management team have opted to employ Rider Replacement for the missing top gun, citing it as the more suitable choice.

But crucially, team manager Mark Lemon will also not be accompanying his side to the Jordan Road Surfacing Stadium due to a fixture clash with the Speedway Best Pairs Cup in Germany.

Round two of the three-part series kicks off in Güstrow at 8pm local time and the Team Australia boss is hoping his spritely duo can gain ground on current leaders Denmark and Poland.

Filling his boots for the night is experienced Sheffield Tigers team manager Jack Lee, who has been a familiar sight around the Belle Vue pits for a number of years.

Lemon described his absence from tonight’s clash as “less than ideal for the boys” but remains confident in the prowess of his substitute.

He said: “Unfortunately I’m away on international duty tonight so I won’t be with the team for their visit to Leicester. It’s not an ideal situation but you couldn’t ask for a better stand-in than Jack Lee.

“He’s already quite familiar with a few of our guys and he’s doing a terrific job with the Sheffield boys so far this season, so good in fact that they haven’t yet lost a meeting!

“Leicester is a place where I feel we definitely need to be picking up points and after the frustration of the last few days, to come away with something rather than nothing has to be our aim.

“Obviously it'll come down to our selection of guests. It’s going to be a tough job without Matej at No.1 so the rest of the team will need to give that little bit extra to keep things close.”

Leicester Lions

Jason Doyle (C); GUEST TBC; Grzegorz Walasek; Szymon Wozniak; Bjarne Pedersen; Josh Auty; Simon Lambert

Belle Vue ‘Rentruck’ Aces

Matej Zagar R/R; Max Fricke; Scott Nicholls (C); Richie Worrall (G); Simon Stead; Steve Worrall; Stefan Nielsen