JOIN BELLE VUE ACES CEO, ADRIAN SMITH, AND DIRECTOR OF SPEEDWAY, MARK LEMON, AS THEY CHAT ALL THINGS SPEEDWAY WITH OUR HOST, DAVE NEAL.
It was a beautiful sunny day and the National Speedway Stadium in Manchester, home of the Belle Vue Aces looked immaculate. As Dave, Adrian and Mark sat up in the hospitality suite overlooking the track there was a genuine sense of pride for the pair as they chatted openly with our podcast host.
Dave and the fellas discussed the long history of the Aces and what it means to them both to be the ones driving the club forward through the obvious difficult times we have at present. It definitely felt like a part of that history was disappearing, though as the wreckers and diggers had moved in at the old Kirkmanshulme Lane stadium just next door, dismantling the previous history of the club piece by piece.
The future of the sport was well covered and how the new deal with Eurosport to show the Premiership live on Monday evenings is a real shot in the arm for the sport in general. Speedway doesn't get the recognition it deserves in the UK, it's almost a niche within a niche but the fans are as passionate as any other about their beloved teams.
Also discussed is just how Speedway operates, as the riders are available to ride for several clubs in several countries across the season - teammates one day, rivals the next. It's something that is pretty unprecedented across sport in general but works incredibly well - although the risk of injury is increased exponentially with the amount of racing the top riders take part in. It can be a brutal sport at times...
At the time of the chat, Belle Vue had won their opening fixture against Sheffield, broadcast live on Eurosport as the season opener, and were due to face Wolverhampton the following week but inclement weather put a stop to that. Undeterred the Aces faced Peterborough Panthers in a Bank Holiday double-header on the Monday after our chat, in which the home match was drawn at lunchtime but the Panthers soundly beaten by the Aces in Peterborough that evening.
We'll bring you more on the Aces across the season, this is just a taster of what's to come.