For the first time in many years several solo speedway action meetings are being planned for winter with the Mildura Olympic Park Speedway and the Gillman Speedway combining for solo teams
The contests will not only provide opportunities for riders squeezed out of England over new qualification rules but also give experience for Australian riders to participate in teams racing, which is the basis of speedway seasons in both England and Europe.
Two seven rider teams will race against each other on the first Saturday and Sunday of each month, Saturday at Gillman and Sunday in Mildura, starting in May.
Mildura's international rider, Justin Sedgmen said that when Dave Parker first suggested the idea, he thought it just had to happen and there has been a lot of work behind the scenes to make sure it does.
“It’s a great way to get our local lads accustomed to team racing which is the standard form of racing in the UK and Europe”.
He said team racing is usually over just 15 races, but both Gillman and Mildura will have “double header” meetings, with 30 races on each day.
In another initiative, the teams will have an overseas flavour with links to two of the biggest clubs in Poland and UK.
"The Leszno Bulls (Poland) and the Swindon Robins (England) both have strong ties with Australian riders and they are allowing us to use their names” Gilman promotor Dave Parker said.
He said In the past Gillman has staged practice meetings on the first Sunday of each month during the winter.
“We will still be having our monthly practice meetings but we will be moving them to the Saturday and combining them with the team’s meetings,” he said..
“We are so happy this has been well received by both clubs, the riders, and the overseas clubs,” Sedgmen said.
“All we need now is for the supporters to get behind us all and who knows where this will lead to the future?”
More details of dates and times will be available over the next few days on the Gillman and Mildura websites and Facebook pages.
Although Sedgmen rode at the Melbourne Grand Prix meeting he suffered injury and because he did not get placed in either a State title or Australian title, became ineligible for a British Visa despite having ridden there successfully for several years.