King's Lynn Stars team boss 'cautiously optimistic' that speedway will return in 2021
King’s Lynn Stars team boss Peter Schroeck is cautiously optimistic that speedway can return on time – or nearly so – in 2021.
Schroeck reminded a sport whose last campaign was decimated by coronavirus that supporters’ involvement is paramount.
In its latest messages on social media, the shale sport’s authorities seem confident of a traditional restart.
For example, the official @SpeedwayGB site ‘Tweeted’ on Monday: “Three months to go until the proposed start date of the season.
“There’s plenty of time to unite to ensure we can come back together by then.
“We’ll continue preparing for the new season as the vaccine continues to be rolled out.”
Given the nation entered a third lockdown this week, nothing before a previously-mentioned starting date of Easter seems realistic. Easter this year falls on Sunday, April 4.
Asked if this is a realistic prospect, Schroeck replied, with a note on the importance of fans in attendance: “Possibly. I truly hope so.
“That is a crucial factor in professional speedway; you just can’t afford to run without a crowd.
“We’ve got incredible backing from the television people while the past year has been so unpredictable and hopefully it will all be settled down.”
Schroeck does not underestimate the overall impact of Covid: “It has been frightening people. I do sympathise with those who have lost people to the pandemic,” he continued.
“But it seems everything is down to Covid and we have got to work something out. You do need a crowd in speedway, like you need a crowd in football.
“Sport can only survive for so long without the backing of a crowd. I hope there is a solution to be found.”
The Stars in August proved a meeting could be run with fans in a Covid-hit climate when staging a British Youth Championship round.
And Schroeck added: “At King’s Lynn [with a crowd of] 1,500 to 1,600 you could lose that in a stadium like ours.
“With most stadiums you can lose that, where people won’t be standing on top of each other. We’ve managed to do that at King’s Lynn.
“I know there are other stadiums like Ipswich which can do that.”
n Don’t miss Tuesday’s Lynn News for news from the speedway AGM.