Wednesday January 06, 2021
LEICESTER joint-owner Damien Bates will head into Thursday’s British Speedway AGM with a vow to put the overall good of the sport above personal interest.

Bates, who is in charge of the Watling JCB Lions as well as Premiership Sheffield, says it’s more important than ever for promoters to look at the bigger picture.

After losing an entire league season to the pandemic last year, bosses are planning on a spring re-launch following the start of vaccinations to combat the virus throughout the country.

With Polish rules now restricting the amount of other leagues riders can sign up for, the Premiership will be forced into a new-look for 2021.

And Bates said: “Speaking from a personal perspective, I will be supporting proposals which are for the good of the sport throughout the UK, this year and for years to come.

“These are changing times and we have to adapt to protect the long term future of this wonderful sport.

“I won’t be supporting anything just because it benefits Sheffield or Leicester, I will only be supporting what is good for British Speedway and in my own mind I know what that is.

“We are gripped by a pandemic, we are up against a changing landscape with riders ruled out thanks to Poland and we need to come together for the greater good of the sport. If that means a change or two along the way then so be it.

"At Leicester my promoter Stewart Dickson needs to replace Ellis Perks and he has options for every eventuality decided on Thursday. He will go with whatever is decided, for the good of the sport.

"There will be changes at Sheffield, but again we will work within whatever is agreed. The landscape has changed dramatically since the end of last season."

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