The 2020 season officially kicks off this weekend at Scunthorpe, with the annual curtain raiser the Ben Fund meeting.
I don’t need to remind anyone how great a cause this is, or just how much help it has given to so many riders over the years. From a Berwick standpoint alone, Ricky Ashworth and Carlos Villar have been two riders who have received help along the way, thanks to the outstanding work that the Ben Fund does throughout the year.
These guys serve as a stark reminder of just how dangerous the sport of speedway can be, and the sheer magnitude of what these guys put on the line to entertain us fans gets somewhat lost on us on occasion.
Hopefully a bumper crowd turns out for this and it boost the Ben Fund just that little bit more, and a special mention too to Ben Barker, who has competed in every Ben Fund meeting since its inception. While he may not be everyone’s cup of tea, there is little doubt that he is a committed performer who understands just how important the meeting is, so credit where it’s due.
So, what else is new?
Well in typical fashion, I had no sooner uploaded part three of my season preview and a team change had occurred, admittedly it hasn’t quite reached the Coronavirus like epidemic of 2019 in terms of team changes, but it was frustrating nonetheless.
Somerset were rocked by the news that their number one Bradley Wilson Dean would be forced to miss the start of the season due to a troublesome shoulder injury, and this posed a problem for the Rebels management as they looked to be scrambling to replace him.
But much like Paul Daniels, the Rebels were quick to pull a rather handy rabbit out of a conveniently placed hat as American starlet Luke Becker was announced as a replacement for the unfortunate Wilson Dean.
In my opinion this makes the Rebels a far stronger looking side and Becker will be a tremendous addition to the Championship.
With American legend Greg Hancock as his mentor Becker has already turned several heads both in the Premiership and on the continent, and by all accounts he has all the tools to be the next big thing to don the famous stars and stripes.
American Speedway has had somewhat of a dry spell when it comes to producing top line talent capable of reaching GP status, but Becker looks to be a shining light with a very bright future. Fair play to Somerset for pulling off a signing that no doubt will have a few folks changing their pre season predictions!
Now as I was typing this up, I happened to have a glance at the old social media as one is partial to do so, only to find that Birmingham had also been forced into making a team change. This time it was former Bandit Tomas H Jonasson making way for German rider Valentin Grobauer, who of course had a spell with the aforementioned Somerset last season.
The reason behind the change seems to be due to Jonasson's Swedish club changing their race night to a Wednesday, which of course would mean fixture clashes, which the neither needs nor wants. It is completely understandable but ultimately it's a change I feel weakens the Brummies, but ultimately time will tell.
Team changes before a wheel has been turned, is this a sign of things to come? I sure as hell hope not because the last time I tried to keep up with it, I had to lie down in a darkened room for several days afterwards!
Speedway, you gotta love it!
Of course if you wish to agree, or disagree with the Mythman, have an idea for a feature, or you simply want to chew the fat over all things speedway, you can email me firstname.lastname@example.org or get in touch via the JB Speedway Media Facebook page. If your compliments, or indeed gripes can be contained to limited characters, you can send me a tweet @Mythman666.
Until next time...and there will be a next time.
Right I’ll hae’tae gan