Warriors to compete in Vince Mapley Memorial Trophy

Ben Morley. Picture: Sportsography
Ben Morley. Picture: Sportsography
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The Isle of Wight Wightlink Warriors’ riders take a break from team action this week.

Instead, they’re out for individual glory at the club stage of the annual Vince Mapley Memorial Trophy, which takes place at the Andrew Younie Smallbrook Stadium tomorrow night.

Originally earmarked to be the curtain-raiser meeting of the 2018 season in April at the Ryde venue, wet weather forced its cancellation.

The Warriors promoters were quick to reschedule the event.

Barry Bishop was sincere in his acknowledgement of Vince Mapley’s influence on himself and fellow co-promoter, Martin Widman, as they prepared to relaunch speedway on the Isle of Wight in 2015.

Bishop revealed competing in the tournament is a way of honouring a man who did so much for the team.

He said: ‘We owe a huge debt of gratitude to Vince and his family.

‘They were so supportive of our plans.

‘It is only right that we honour the memory of a man who, over the period of our association, was a real inspiration to Martin and myself.

‘Vince was a determined and dedicated speedway man.

‘So we will always try to assemble a line-up that reflects those values.

‘We believe we have the riders to serve up another night of close-quarter action this week.’

For the third renewal of the competition, home number-one rider, Ben Morley, will likely start as favourite.

He’s been in fine form in recent weeks.

But after Morley it is very competitive among the 12-rider field and predicting podium spots is a lot more difficult.

Wightlink talents Kelsey Dugard, Sam Woolley, Shaun Tedham, Ben Hopwood, Tom Woolley, Callum Walker, Danno Verge, Chris 
Widman, Scott Campos, Jamie Sealey and Alfie Bowtell are all set to feature tomorrow night.

Usual admission arrangements apply to attend the highly-anticipated event.

Gates at the Andrew Younie Smallbrook Stadium open at 5.30pm.

The first heat has been scheduled to get under way at 7pm.

– ROB DYER