King's Lynn Stars promoter threatens to sell up after Sheffield clash falls foul of weather
Clearly frustrated club supremo Keith Chapman vented his feelings and threatened to sell King’s Lynn and Peterborough as the Stars were forced to postpone tonight’s meeting with the Sheffield Tigers.
A freak cloudburst eventually halted proceedings just before 8.45pm and some riders were clearly unhappy about the prospect of racing.
‘Buster’ Chapman owns King’s Lynn and fellow SGB Premiership club Peterborough.
An emotional Chapman, after nearly an hour’s worth of work on the Adrian Flux Arena track, in the heat of the moment said during a centre-green interview: “It seems the riders aren’t very keen to ride.
“In my opinion the track’s safe. It’s their choice, not mine. I’ve worked this track for nearly 30 years.
“In my opinion the track is good. I’ll make this quite clear: if anyone wants to put money into King’s Lynn Speedway - next meeting will be my last, here and at Peterborough when we finish the season.
“Both promotions are up for sale and I mean that quite sincerely. I’ve done my time. I’ve done nearly 30 years.
“I’m sorry for you folks and the work we’ve put in and everyone’s committed to it. I’ll tell you now I am done.
“Next week will be my last at King’s Lynn and when Peterborough finish it will be my last as a promoter in speedway.
“Both clubs will be up for sale and I mean that 100 per cent so I’m sorry, I’ve given you 30 years of my time and effort and you’ve given me 30 years of yours, a lot of you, but I am done. Thank you.”
This was greeted by an appreciative round of applause from fans.
Riders, referee Chris Gay and officials were forced to assess track conditions when the unexpected rain lashed down at the Saddlebow Road stadium from 6pm onwards, less than two hours before action was supposed to start.
Chapman said from the start that the track was in good condition.
Both teams - Chapman, Lynn captain Lewis Kerr, Sheffield manager Simon Stead, his skipper Kyle Howarth and others met on-track to assess conditions - were keen to press ahead if possible before the scheduled parade time of 7.30pm.
Chapman began last-ditch track work just before 8pm and it was announced the riders were getting changed.
It initially looked as if the track had weathered what British summer could throw at it but further inspections proved otherwise amid some rider unease.