Wightlink Warriors welcome Kent Kings, Plymouth Gladiators and Breem Construction Stars for opening meeting of 'innovative' Fours series
Wightlink Warriors host the opening meeting of an exciting new series on Thursday night (7pm), writes Rob Dyer.
But the unavailability of Georgie Wood and Scott Campos will leave them relying on replacements when they battle for Fours glory at the Smallbrook Stadium.
The Warriors welcome Plymouth Gladiators, Kent Kings and Breem Construction Stars – a composite side stepping in for Mildenhall Fen Tigers – to the Ryde shale.
Each team will field a quartet of riders in 16 races as the three-round championship gets under way.
The action then continues at Plymouth on Friday before climaxing at Kent’s Sittingbourne headquarters on Monday, August 5.
Following the NICE Challenge earlier this month, Barry Bishop is thrilled to host another fresh twist on the sport.
The Warriors co-promoter said: ‘Another week and another innovative meeting for the fans to enjoy.
‘It’s the Fours this week and my thanks to Len Silver, from Kent, for putting the idea of a southern-based tournament together.
‘It’s a shame we have lost Mildenhall but the Breem Stars won’t let anyone down.
‘And while we are disappointed to go into the meeting without Georgie and Scott, we are lining up replacements who will give their all for the Warriors cause.
‘It promises to be another full-on evening for the first week of the school summer holidays and I for one can’t wait.’
Ben Morley and Danno Verge are the confirmed starters for the Warriors.
Wood, who has been unwell, is sidelined as he serves a seven-day suspension for missing Monday’s trip to Belle Vue Colts for a non-speedway reasons.
Meanwhile, Campos is suffering the after effects of a heavy fall in Manchester.
The Stars will feature Luke Bowen, who is returning after a serious leg injury, as well as the vastly-experienced Paul Hurry, who is also closely involved in a coaching role with Great Britain’s younger riders.
Nathan Ablitt and former Warriors rider Ryan Terry-Daley complete their line-up.
Kent Kings look the team to beat with talented teenagers Jordan Jenkins and Dan Gilkes joining the red-hot Anders Rose and former skipper Jack Thomas, who steps in for Drew Kemp.
Meanwhile, the Gladiators will go into battle with Richard Andrews, who last week defended his pairs title alongside Campos, Ben Wilson, Adam Extance and Luke Chessell.
Entry is free for 34-year-olds as part of the Warriors’ age-related promotion. Gates open at 5.30pm.