Preview: Island Racers Hunt Trophy Glory
This Thursday (7th July) the shale track action at the Smallbrook Stadium in Ryde sees the return of the Vince Mapley Memorial Trophy - an individual meeting for twelve riders - supported for the first time by further races featuring riders from the Flat Track discipline of two wheeled motorcycle sport.
Wightlink Warriors top man Ben Morley (pictured), who won the meeting in 2018, heads the line up where he will be joined by Warriors captain Danno Verge who will be hoping for a podium place on home shale, whilst former Warrior Connor Coles is sure to have a big say in the destination of the trophy. It will also be great to welcome back Tom Woolley who is more than capable of causing an upset at Smallbrook and on this occasion Tom will be joined by his younger brother Sam now firmly established as a rider of growing potential in the National Development League. Super keen Devonian Ben Trigger, who is fast becoming an Island regular, will also be a welcome visitor and there will also be opportunities for riders from the Wightlink Wizards and Warlock's with Aaron Butcher, Chris Watts, Jamie Sealey, James Laker, Vinny Branch and Morgan Williams all being offered more track time.
There will also be lots of interest in the Flat Track part of the programme under the leadership of Anthony Brown of The Dirt Track Riders Association. Flat Track has been growing in popularity, but unlike conventional Speedway bikes, flat track bikes benefit from gears and back brakes. They have adapted well to racing on other Speedway circuits where they have competed and after some successful winter trials at Smallbrook, the Warriors promoters have brought them in to the 2022 race programme. With up to eight riders in a race and heats running over six to ten laps, stamina and reliability will be essential to cope with the wide-open spaces of the Ryde Raceway.
Gates at the Smallbrook stadium open at 17.15. Spectators are welcome to visit the pits and listen to the rider briefing at 18.00 and the pre-meeting demonstration races will then follow ahead of the main event which will be at 19.00, this week sponsored by Acclaim Logistics. Full refreshment facilities will be in operation throughout.