Hammers team plans begin to take shape

The Lakeside Hammers Speedway team’s plans for 2011 are slowly taking shape ahead of the festive period and the Club hopes to be in a position to announce much of the line up soon.

The Hammers are determined to put together a team to challenge for the Elite League title and will call on captain and number one Lee Richardson’s experience along with that of Co Promoters Stuart Douglas and Jon Cook to put together a competitive 1-7 under the 40 point regulations.

Two riders already ruled out of those plans are Swede Jonas Davidsson and Finnish asset Joonas Kylmakorpi. Davidsson has been in talks with the Club over the last couple of months and it’s been agreed mutually that he will miss most of the British season to concentrate on racing in both Swedish leagues and in Poland . Davidsson was a shadow of his previous self last year after a slow start to the year followed by a succession of injuries but remains in the Club’s long term plans and has made himself available for cameo appearances should his services be needed at any part of the year.

Kylmakorpi will not make his expected return to Essex after receiving a superior contract offer from elsewhere in the League and as a result the Hammers have received a transfer request from the rider. The fee will be earmarked to bring in a replacement rider for the 2011 season.

Jon Cook states: “Stuart and I are excited about the team as it’s coming together and to have Lee’s input is a considerable help. With JD (Jonas Davidsson) taking a sabbatical we will be looking at our heat leader options although it’s rather handy to have him available if needed during the season. Joonas’ (Kylmakorpi) situation was not unexpected as he had a great end of the year and was likely to want to keep his set up the same and in any case in the current financial climate we won’t be breaking our wages structure for any one rider.”

Cook continued: “It’s been a turbulent close season, so far, outside of the club but I can assure our fans that we will have an attractive team and a full fixture list to enjoy come March with our first meeting set for Friday March 26th in a challenge against Swindon, followed by a return leg, designed to set up both teams for the season ahead with experience of the new silencers on small and large circuits. Before that we will also have several days of practise to make sure we will be in tip top fitness for the season ahead.”

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