Plans have been unveiled for a new Bell Vue Sports Village, which would see the construction of a National Speedway Centre and Academy, as well as a National Basketball Centre.
The venue would house the Belle Vue Aces, whose current stadium is also used for greyhound and stock-car racing, and for the proposal to finally get the green light is excellent news for the club and for speedway in Britain.
The Sports Village could hold international meetings and World Cups and will, therefore, bring plenty of money in the Aces' direction as they try to build a side that can compete in the upper echelons of the Elite League, something they haven't done in a while.
Plus, the swanky new facilities should make the Manchester club more attractive and help lure some of the better riders to the North West, so I would like to think this signals the start of a positive new era for Jason Attwood's team.
A new venue should make Belle Vue more attractive and help lure some of the better riders to the North West.
Quotes of the week
LIVE ON SKY SPORTS
Elite League Speedway
Belle Vue v Peterborough
7.30pm, Mon, Sky Sports 1 HD
The Aces finished rock-bottom of the Elite League last term and begun this campaign in slow fashion, but have picked up recently and recorded draw with and victory over Coventry, and the win at home could really galvanise them.
Belle Vue should be a tough side to beat at Greyhound Stadium as it is a tight, technical track and not easy for visiting teams to adapt to.
And they need to rack up the points on their own circuit, because we saw how poor they can be away when they lost to Wolverhampton on Sky Sports a couple of weeks ago.
Aces rider Ales Dryml wasn't very good that night and he wasn't great in the triumph over Coventry either, accruing just the one point, and as an experienced rider he must do a lot better - but a couple of Belle Vue's young guns have fired.
Kevin Wolbert comes from Germany, a country not renowned for its speedway pedigree, but he top scored against the Bees and seems like a very focussed character, while Craig Cook, a man from a motocross background, is keen to do well, too.
Cook has a lot of potential and I hope he fulfils it because I love to see British riders come through the ranks and I would be chuffed to bits if Craig made his mark in the Elite League and, perhaps, at an even higher level someday.
Belle Vue host Peterborough on Monday night in our Sky Live fixture and the visitors could probably do without a trip to rampant table toppers Swindon on Friday, the side they lost to heavily earlier this week.
The Panthers, who have just one victory to the name this season, against Eastbourne, are at home, though, which increases their chances, and if they can put in a solid display it could boost morale for the match with the Aces.
Peterborough's away woes can be put down to the fact their track is big and fast and suits their team well, while other venues require a different technique of riding and when they go to places like Belle Vue and Wolverhampton, they have to deal with tighter corners.
And for that reason, I am going to tip Belle Vue to win narrowly on Monday night.
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John Porteous says...
Lets hope that whoever builds the new stadium, will make it like the old stadium was on Hyde Road with a long track with long bends, and stands that will take about 25 thousand people just like the old days in the late 60s and early 70s, the atmosphere was fantastic and the smells of the ethanol? Me and a few friends used to go to the social club at belle vue where we were members, in the second half of the 60s to play snooker and table tennis, we went on trials bikes and scramblers that we had and one night when we were coming out of the club ( which was opposite the starting line under the stands) we noticed that the gate on to the track was open and a few of the lights were on over the track, well needless to say, I think it was me ,steve, and barry looked at each other and said let's go, so we all did about 3 or 4 laps around the track on our bikes, I had a DOT scrambler, so did barry and steve had a Franny Barnet trials, they were all road registered and had lights on, somebody must have wondered what the hell was going on , with 3 bikes flying round the track with their lights on as it was nearly dark, what a night that was, I still remember that night as if it was yesterday, there cannot be many people who have said that they blasted round the track on scramblers, when we went to the social club the next week, we didn't half get a bollocking, and we didn't get told not to come back again so maybe they found the funny side of it, we were even going to ask Ivan Mauger if he fancied a race with us the next week. Ah the good old day's.
Posted 17:11 19th May 2013
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