Danny King column: Bellego can be our trump card (no pressure David). And don't mention roller coasters to Ritchie
© Copyright Stephen Waller
Ipswich Witches star Danny King is back with his weekly column as the season gets underway at Foxhall Heath.
Here we go then!
Opening night at Foxhall on Thursday, the weather forecast is set fair and speedway is back on the Heath.
It will be great to see so many of you again after what has been a long winter off for me.
Well, more like a long summer, autumn and winter for me after my arm injury. But we’re back now.
Before you ask, yes my arm is fine thank you.
I do appreciate everyone’s concern and fully understand all the questions, but I hope now to be able to put a line under the injury.
I’ve had three meetings so far this year and no reaction to the arm injury. Phew! Am I glad.
Hopefully that’s it!
So, as I said it’s opening night at Foxhall on Thursday, but already I’ve been quite busy on track.
I’ve had three meetings, starting with the Ben Fund Bonanza at Leicester. It was not an impressive start from your’s truly after I obliterated the tapes in my opening race.
But after that I settled down well and won my other four heats on the bounce.
Sadly, I couldn’t quite reproduce it in the final and came third, but a good start.
I said I don’t want to keep talking about my arm and after this I won’t. But you can imagine my relief that after five rides at Leicester in the Ben Fund Bonanza I went home and woke up the next day with my arm feeling fine.
It was press and practice day at Foxhall next up and it all went very well.
We were well looked after up at Ipswich Sports Club and Chris Louis even bought us all lunch! I know, incredible!
There were loads of pix taken as usual and we even did a podcast with Mike Bacon which was good fun, especially when Cameron Heeps was asked how old he was when Chris Louis was riding in the National League.
“What year was that,” said Cam.
“1989”, came the reply.
“Weren’t born mate,” said Cam, as Chris looked horrified.
“You can go off people,” came Chris’ response.
So, the podcast was fun with all the Witches involved, including Krystian Pieszczek who came on and chatted via an interpreter!
In the afternoon we all got some much-needed track time.
The Witches travelled to Leicester on Saturday night and we did well to win by 10.
Quite honestly it could have been more because we had some terrible bike problems throughout.
That, of course, is the reason for these challenge meetings at the start of the season, to iron out a few issues after the long winter break.
I rode ok, it could have been better and I missed all the commotion in the pits when Richard Lawson and Richie Worrall had a little ‘tête-à-tête’ after one race.
It was a lively old first team meeting to be honest and although we were missing Krystian Pieszczek, who was riding in Poland, Drew Kemp did well.
In fact I think he deserved more points than he actually achieved, because he rode nicely.
My third meeting was at Sheffield on Sunday.
Sheffield are my Championship club this season and we had already enjoyed press and practice day the week before.
On Sunday my form was pretty good again and I finished third in the final, although it as a bit of a gater’s paradise to be honest.
David Bellego, our new Witch for the season, was in great form and won the meeting after getting into the semi-final, winning that and then the final!
I think David is going to be our trump card this season.
I’m a big fan of his and when I found out he was racing for the Witches this year, I was delighted.
So, there you have it. The winter is behind us and the summer ahead.
As a family we enjoyed a good holiday in Florida over Christmas. The boys loved it, and I must admit I love the roller coasters.
In fact I could retire to Orlando.
Clara, who is a teacher, could find a school out there to work in and I’ll get a job at Universal or Disneyland as a roller coaster ‘tester’.
I’d love that!
Not that Ritchie Hawkins would.
My mate, and our team boss, can’t stand roller coasters. He’s all over the place at a fun fair. He was once sick after coming off the cups and saucers!
Amazing, he rides speedway bikes but doesn’t like roller coasters – unbelievable.
Talking of Ritchie. You can’t have failed to notice the old moustache is back and causing quite a stir.
Some like it, some don’t.
I said last year, when it made an appearance on press day, and I’ll say it again now... The more you tell him you don’t like it....
SEE YOU AT FOXHALL!
AS TOLD TO MIKE BACON