Ipswich Witches reveal first two riders for 2019 team
© Copyright Stephen Waller
Danny King will be back for the Ipswich Witches in 2019 - and will captain the side as they return to the Premiership, writes Henry Chard.
King, who has been with the club for the past four seasons in the Championship, will be joined at Foxhall by Queenslander Jake Allen, who spent time with Scunthorpe in the Championship last campaign and increased his average to 7.37 having started the year on 6.08.
For King, 32, next year will be his eleventh with the Witches, a place he very much calls home despite not being a club asset.
“It’s really exciting for me, it’s where I have always wanted to be; in the top league with Ipswich,” said King. “It’s a club with a lot of history and we are back where we belong at the highest level. It is nice to be back representing them and we will try and get some silverware.”
The 2016 British champion endured a frustrating 2018 season as he was ruled out for the bulk of the year with a severe nerve injury in his arm, riding in just seven meetings for the Witches. The skipper underwent successful surgery in October and is now well on the road to recovery.
He explained: “The injury is doing great; the operation went fantastically, and the recovery is going quicker than expected. At the rate it is going, I am hoping to get on a bike in January depending on the weather.”
The Team GB rider, who will race for Sheffield in the Championship, is already raring to go in 2019 and is training hard ahead of the new season.
“The winter has been good, I have been training hard,” he said. “Normally at this time of year I have had enough of speedway and I want to rest and enjoy Christmas and not think about speedway until after. I have had my rest though, I have not ridden a bike since July, so I have been training hard and I am really eager to get back on a bike.”
Meanwhile, Allen has been much sought after this winter after an impressive 2018 – but it is the Witches who have won the race for his signature.
The 23-year-old began his British speedway career in 2016 with Somerset as the Rebels won the league and league cup and he has stayed with the club since his arrival in the country, establishing a 4.56 average in the Premiership last season and winning the Knockout Cup in the process.