They say that it’s the hope that kills you and for 14 and seven eighths races at Redcar on Sunday it looked like we could dare to dream, an elusive first away win of the season but in the end we had to settle for a draw.
Did we deserve to win? Absolutely.
Should we have won? Probably.
Should the Bandits feel proud of the effort they put in? You better bloody believe it!
The Bandits battled for every single point and to a man, they were absolutely superb. I know Leon was beating himself up about heat 15, but trust me that lad stepped up into a pressure situation and cost his team absolutely nothing and a season from now, those are exactly the sorts of races he’ll be winning.
For all a draw snatched from the jaws of victory may have felt a little like a defeat the simple fact of the matter is that nobody would have given the Bandits a snowballs chance in hell of getting anything from that meeting prior to heat one. The other side of that coin is that had you offered the Bandits two league points prior to the meeting, the chances are that most, if not all fans would have bitten your arm off, especially with the team changes that Redcar had made.
A point gained for Redcar and two for the Bandits but for me the real winner was speedway and the fans in attendance. They were treated to an afternoon of absolutely breath-taking racing and a bit of a fan boy dream come true for myself as I was lucky enough to be calling the action from the commentary desk, which was an absolute pleasure to say the least.
Never ever did I think I would see the day where I would be calling the action in a meeting where my team, the team I have followed since I was a boy, would be in action. That’s next level dream stuff for someone like me.
This sport kicks all the ass, let me tell you!
On that note, I do wish to publicly thank my fellow blogger and Bandits programme editor George Dodds for his kind comments about me and my recent work in the Bandits programme on Saturday. Also a huge thanks to club icon Dennis McCleary for his comments in the section too, it was very much appreciated and it’s nice to know that my efforts have not gone unnoticed.
I was also stopped near the H-Bar on Saturday night where I received some fantastic feedback on some of my recent ramblings here on the Dirt Xtra. Any feedback on anything, be it good, bad or indifferent makes all of this worthwhile so for that, I thank you.
Talking of Saturday, that was a bit interesting wasn’t it? The six man format lent itself well and it certainly didn’t take away anything from the evening. My only nit-pick was that I didn’t really know who to cheer for! But with that being said I would like to see a trial fixture between two full strength Championship sides to see how that panned out.
Perhaps if a Premier Trophy style tournament returned to the calendar for 2022 perhaps this sort of format could be trialled during that? For me at least the idea has legs and I think those in charge would be foolish not to at least consider it in some capacity moving forward.
The aim for British speedway just now must be to make it to the end of the season with as many teams in tact and as many teams as possible coming to the tapes for 2022. There is currently an emphasis on nurturing our own young talent and growing the sport from within with the introduction of the “rising star” scheme, which on the whole has to be viewed as a success, but that must also continue.
However as we know, that alone is not a solution to the obvious problems the sport has and to that there perhaps is no quick fix as it were. But what we do know is that there is a bit of a rider shortage, so if a six man format could work, then it would free up a few riders to perhaps alleviate some of that, at least until more rising stars come up through from the ranks of the fantastic work done at youth level.
There are of course many more layers to this that could fill many a column inch and perhaps I’ll peel them all back another time. But when you start to look at growing the sport from grass roots all the way to international level, simply put without one you don’t get the other and without domestic racing in-between you don’t get either in my opinion.
If Saturday past told us anything it’s that there is plenty of food for thought and that it was absolutely a worthwhile exercise. All we can do now is watch this space and see what happens from here on out.
But before all that there’s some Bandits slaying Kings and Bullets shooting down Royals to witness at Shielfield this Saturday night in what promises to be a proper Royal Rumble!
See ya there!
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