Blogs & Opinion

Kelvin Tatum looks ahead to the British Speedway Championship

Kelvin Tatum Posted 10th May 2013 view comments

Kelvin Tatum makes his predictions for Monday's British Speedway Championship at Wolverhampton, when the cream of the UK face off individually.

Scott Nicholls is the champion and has won this competition no less than seven times. It's a quite staggering record in this event and it's a meeting that he's clearly always targeted.

He's been a very proud winner of this event in the past and he's got just a brilliant record.

Woffinden is the man to beat, says Kelvin

Woffinden is the man to beat, says Kelvin

Historically, he's been involved with showdowns with Chris Harris at the British Championship but this year I don't necessarily see it as a straight shoot-out between the pair.


Tai Woffinden has to be the red-hot favourite for the meeting. He's the present Grand Prix representative for Great Britain and is currently lying fourth in the whole world.

Woffinden's early-season form in the Elite League has also been outstanding, whereas both Nicholls and Harris have had slow starts to the campaign, so for me, Woffinden is the favourite.

This event certainly isn't just a bit of fun. You obviously like to enjoy your racing but this is a prestigious title as the national championship. I remember when I rode in it, it was one of the targets for the year, personally. I think that's the case for most of the riders.

Yes, it's an individual event and a break from team activities so obviously if you don't do well you don't let anyone besides yourself down, but it's a hotly contested meeting and generally throws up some great action.


Form can be misleading going into a one-off event like this and you can get riders who have done very little suddenly burst through and do something very special on the night. Nicholls is a rider that can do that because he will be very keen to retain his title.

I think the disparity between the riders is key, though. The reason I've waxed lyrical about Woffinden is that he's not just riding well in the league but is riding extremely well at the highest level in the Grand Prixs. I would suggest that he would be looking forward to that.

Furthermore, it's at Woffinden's home track so I would suggest that he'd be extra keen to finally win this in front of his home crowd.

It's definitely not just Woffinden who will benefit from Wolverhampton though. Nicholls likes the track and rides it round and Harris has ridden well there. Eddie Kennett is another rider who enjoys it round there and has been in some good form.

Venue change

Traditionally in the past, this event was held at Coventry, which is a bigger track. This will be slightly more technically demanding and it won't suit all the riders - someone like Simon Stead is a rider would benefit from a bigger track and maybe even Harris would be more comfortable at a Swindon or a Coventry.

In terms of the outsiders, you have a handful of Premier League riders who are making the way in the sport. Someone like Ben Barker of Birmingham might be a surprise package and also Craig Cook of Belle Vue will be looking to put their best feet forward.

I can't see past Woffinden, though. It puts pressure on his shoulders but he's not just been the best of the British riders this season by a small margin - he's been the best of the British riders this season comfortably. He's been outstanding and we haven't had a rider running fourth in the world for a decade. He's moved into a different sphere.

Kelvin's prediction: Tai Woffinden

In terms of the aftermath, it's been a disappointing start to the year for Coventry and for Nicholls individually, so it would be a huge shot in the arm for the club if he proves me wrong and comes back as the new British champion.

Sky Sports is offering you the chance to win tickets to the British Grand Prix - click here to enter.

back to top

Other Speedway Experts:

Latest Posts in Speedway:

Kelvin Tatum

Back on track

Lakeside can make it two wins over Belle Vue Aces in four days, says Kelvin Tatum, but it'll be close!...


Kelvin Tatum

Hit the road

Swindon are struggling this season but will fancy their chances at Birmingham, says Kelvin Tatum....


Kelvin Tatum

Racing away

Belle Vue are unbeaten at home but Kelvin Tatum asks if they can transfer that form at Swindon....


Latest News RSS feeds

Playoff tickets deal

Get a great deal on tickets to the Elite League Playoffs as Swindon take on Coventry.

Mixed fortunes for Belle Vue

It was a night of mixed fortunes for Belle Vue Aces as they beat Kings Lynn Stars before losing to Coventry Bees.

Harris seals 2015 GP place

Chris Harris put in a stunning performance in the Grand Prix Challenge in Lonigo to book his place in the 2015 GP series

Korneliussen leaves Leicester

Leicester have parted company with skipper Mads Korneliussen on the eve of their final Elite League tie of the season.

Pirates sting Bees to go top

Poole Pirates raced to the top of the Elite League table with a comprehensive 50-40 win over Coventry Bees on Monday.


Elite League Playoffs: Enjoy all the action with Sky Tickets

Elite League Playoffs: Enjoy all the action with Sky Tickets

Get a great deal on tickets to the Elite League Playoffs as Swindon take on Coventry on October 6, 7.30pm.

The Sky Sports Open Day on August 16th

The Sky Sports Open Day on August 16th

Sky Sports are giving non-Sky Sports customers a day of world-class sport at no extra cost.

Sky Sports News HQ: Breaking news... but not as you know it, says Mike Wedderburn

Sky Sports News HQ: Breaking news... but not as you know it, says Mike Wedderburn

Now we are starting the countdown to Sky Sports News' relaunching as Sky Sports News HQ.