[W]ith just three weeks to go until the 2018 season gets underway at Derwent Park on Saturday 31st March, the Comets promotion are putting the finishing touches to the line-up for this years’ Cumberland Open Championship, which is the first home meeting of the new season.
The traditional 16-rider, 20 heat individual meeting has been a popular inclusion in the Comets fixture list whenever it has been held; dating right back to the Comets inaugural season in 1970.
While the seven 2018 Comets will take to the track for the first time to head the field there are a further nine places to fill; and the Comets promotion are delighted to have secured a stellar line-up, including several former Comets, for this popular event.
The first three visiting names to be announced are all former Comets; with former number one from 2014, Josh Grajczonek, being the initial name on the list.
Josh, who led Sheffield to the league title last season as well as spearheading Somerset’s inaugural top-flight challenge, is not competing in this years’ Championship – instead preferring to concentrate on parent club Poole’s Premiership campaign and trying to establish himself in Poland. So, this provides a rare, and maybe the only, opportunity to see him in action around Derwent Park this season.
The second former Comet to be announced is the popular New Zealand-born American Ricky Wells, who spent three seasons with the Comets (2014 – 2016) where he established himself as a number one in his final season with the club; before moving on to Edinburgh last season, which also saw him double-up with Rye House. The 2018 season will again see him line up with the Monarchs, where he will start the season in the number one race-jacket.
The third rider to be named is another member of Sheffield’s Championship winning side from last season; Comets asset Kyle Howarth. Having joined the Comets in 2012 Kyle spent four years at the club, progressing from reserve to heat leader, before moving on loan to Sheffield for 2016 and doubling-up with Wolverhampton, which he did again last season and will continue to do so in 2018, where he will occupy the number one race-jacket for the Tigers.
Comets owner Laura Morgan said: “We feel we have put together a very attractive field for this year’s Cumberland Open, which we believe will get our season underway in fine style and provide some very competitive track action with quality riders in every race.
“We are all very much looking forward to the new season and this meeting will provide a stern test for our own riders before Glasgow come to town the following week in our first home team fixture.”
The remaining six non-2018 Comets taking part in the Cumberland Open will be announced shortly.
Supporters are reminded that if they are yet to purchase their Season Ticket for 2018 they are still available, as are the popular books of tickets.
With the start of the new speedway season just over three weeks away there are still sponsorship packages for all budgets available on request from Dan on 01900 813999 or by emailing [email protected]