Wolves Speedway to bow out with star-studded Finale

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Chris Van Straaten has paid tribute to the ‘tremendous’ supporters as Wolves Speedway brings the season to a close with the Olympique Finale. 

Wolves in league action. (Credit: Chris Van Straaten)

Parrys International Wolves will be supported by a legendary line-up, with former riders Ricky Wells and Ty Proctor set to take the stage.

Along with the current seven regulars at Monmore Green, familiar opponents Scott Nicholls and Chris “Bomber” Harris will be joined by young German Norick Blodorn to complete the line-up for the final meeting. 

The unique format for the Olympique Finale contains a handicap system, with the winners of each race handed a disadvantaged starting position for the following heat. The fourth place rider will continue to start from the gate, with each man starting further back the better they finished in their last run-out. 

All competitors will have five rides each, with the four highest point-scorers after 15 heats battling it out for the title in the final heat. 

The event follows a strong season for the side, finishing second in the league before bowing out in the play-off semi-finals to eventual winners Peterborough Panthers.

However, the Wolves promoter was keen to focus on the positives, while praising fans for all their support throughout the campaign. 

He added: “I’d just like to say thank you to everybody really. That’s what this is all about because when you go into the playoff competition you’re never sure when your final meeting is going to be and sometimes that’s the beauty of it but also you can’t say goodbye.

“I think the many people who have helped us to get back on track and achieve some success deserve a thank you.

“It’s a low-key affair, it’s some fun out on track, it’s a handicap basis – the riders enjoy that. We’ve got the 250cc riders and of course we bring the curtain down for this year with a dramatic firework display as well. In the Wolverhampton area it’s half-term week so we expect to see lots of kids on the terraces.”

The 250cc races will feature the top three winners in the regular championship with Van Straaten excited to welcome the next generation of talent to Monmore Green.

He said: “We’ve got a series of races which feature 13 and 14-year-olds because you can start to race speedway at the age of six or seven now in the UK, we’ve set up a whole system for that.

“The top three winners in the 250cc championship at Monmore Green are doing some racing so I’ll be delighted to see them and hopefully in three or four years time we’ll see some of them round Monmore Green on a regular basis. We must develop and encourage the British youngsters, that’s what we must concentrate on.”

Wolves taking on league rivals Peterborough Panthers. (Credit: Chris Van Straaten)

The club has experienced a difficult year due to COVID-19, as Monmore Green prepares to host its final event of the year. 

Van Straaten was uncertain about the future of Wolves five months ago, due to the suspension of the 2020 season and reduced capacity at the start of the campaign. He claims the support the team has received has not gone unnoticed.

The promoter said: “We were on our knees and then it was like looking at a rainbow – the restrictions began to lift and once we were back to normal attendances the enthusiasm from everybody round the club. I think we have a tremendous amount of support from supporters, sponsors, everybody.

“It’s been such a lovely season whereas five months ago it looked like we wouldn’t have one.”

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