Well that was worth the wait was it not?
After two rain offs out of two we finally got some sunshine and we finally got to see some racing at Shielfield Park, and my goodness it was worth the wait.
From the very first heat we were treated to some tremendous racing and a meeting between two evenly matched sides in which the gap was never more than four points throughout, an ideal recipe for speedway and exactly how the sport should be presented.
I genuinely believe that every single person who attended Shielfield Park on Saturday past would have left on a high. While Glasgow fans will have been disappointed not to have won the meeting, they sure were entertained, of that there is little doubt.
The Bandits and speedway in general was the real winner on Saturday and there was a real genuine buzz about the place again and long may that continue. Getting a win over the league favourites has to be the ideal tonic upon which to build on this season, and this Saturday we do it all again.
Newcastle Diamonds are the latest visitors to Shielfield and with a similar approach to their team building as ourselves it should make for a decent meeting and with a few familiar faces in the Diamonds line-up the Bandits won’t be taking them lightly.
Carl Wilkinson, Matty Wethers, Tero Aarnio and Ludvig Lindgren are all former Bandits and Stuart Robson isn’t exactly a slouch around Shielfield either, having ridden there many, many times in the past. Add into the mix Lewis Rose, one of Britain’s rising speedway stars and Ashley Morris who has been a thorn in the Bandits side many a times for several different clubs over the years this one has the potential to be another absolute slobberknocker!
From a Bandits point of view there are encouraging signs heading into this weekends meeting, with some riders bang in form from the get go and while others will be keen to improve their performances moving forward,they will be buoyed by a win over the title favourites. Add in the return of Jye Etheridge and a return to full strength and it has the makings of a classic encounter.
Can you tell I’m excited? It really is amazing what a little bit of sunshine speedway can do for you!
However it has been a rather sad week in the speedway world as it lost perhaps the greatest rider ever to don the shale. Six times World Champion Ivan Mauger sadly passed away on Monday at the age of 78. A true pioneer of the sport and a household name all over the world, many of the riders we see today will have been inspired by Ivan in one way or another.
I’m sure I echo the thoughts of everyone in passing on condolences to the Mauger family at this difficult time.
As many of you may be aware, there was further sad news closer to home that long time Bandits fan Martin Hastings AKA The Falkirk Bandit, had also passed away. Martin was a friend of many among the speedway community and will be sadly missed by everyone.
You only had to have a small look at the tributes pouring in via social media to realise what a popular guy he truly was, one of life’s good guys you might say. Martin was one of those people, who everyone knew and I genuinely never heard anyone say a negative thing about him. He always had time for a chat and he was rarely seen without a smile on his face and he truly will be missed.
Again I am sure that I echo the sentiments of everyone in passing on my condolences to his family and friends at this sad time.
I know this weekend’s fixture would have been one that Martin would have greatly looked forward to and given that Newcastle is a former club of Ivan Mauger, I am sure that both sets of riders will put on an absolute barnburner as a fitting tribute to them both.
Of course if you wish to agree, or disagree with the Mythman, have an idea for a feature, or you simply want to chew the fat over all things speedway, you can email me Mythman666@hotmail.com. If your compliments, or indeed gripes can be contained to limited characters. You can send me a tweet @Mythman666.
Until next time...and there will be a next time.
Right I’ll hae’tae gan