Speedway: Panthers to once again host Championship Fours…

Despite their move to Premiership racing for 2019, Peterborough Panthers are celebrating the news that they are to host a national speedway event once again.

The Panthers will play host to the Championship Four Team Tournament on Sunday June 23.

The event,  in which the Panthers have been dominant in recent years, is traditionally seen as a festival of racing with riders such as Scott Nicholls, Craig Cook, Rory Schlein and Danny King all doing battle for their respective clubs on one of the country’s fastest and best racetracks.

Panthers boss Carl Johnson expressed his delight at hosting the event, saying: “Anyone who has been to this event down the years knows what a great occasion it is and everyone here at Peterborough Speedway is delighted to be staging it again.

“It just adds to the excitement building. We have a top class new signing coming in over the next few days, we have a season of top flight racing with the return of club icon Hans Andersen and now confirmation we have the Fours.

“It’s great news for Peterborough Speedway and great news for the city of Peterborough as we bring national recognition with such a major event.”

Major British Speedway events 2019:
BRITISH UNDER-21 FINAL: Berwick, Saturday April 27
CHAMPIONSHIP FOURS: Peterborough, Sunday June 23
BRITISH FINAL: Belle Vue, Monday July 29
BRITISH UNDER-19 FINAL: Redcar, Thursday August 15
CHAMPIONSHIP RIDERS’ INDIVIDUAL: Sheffield, Sunday September 1
CHAMPIONSHIP PAIRS: Somerset, Friday September 20
BRITISH UNDER-21 SEMI-FINALS: Isle of Wight, Tuesday April 16, Somerset (Date TBC)
BRITISH SEMI-FINAL: Redcar, Friday May 31

BRITISH SPEEDWAY FIM EVENTS 2019
SPEEDWAY OF NATIONS RACE-OFF 2: Belle Vue, Saturday May 11
GRAND PRIX QUALIFIER: Glasgow, Saturday June 8
WORLD UNDER-21 TEAM CUP FINAL: Belle Vue, Friday July 12

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Bandy: Great Britain land silver at first World Championships…

It is a sport that has been absent from the world stage for over 100 years, however bandy is enjoying a resurgence in the UK following a silver medal for Great Britain at the recent World Championships.

The tournament, held in the Swedish city of Vänersborg , saw the team remain undefeated against opponents Latvia, China, Somalia, Slovakia, and Japan in the pool stage of the Group B competition.

They then went on to defeat Hungary in the semi finals before missing out on the gold medal against established bandy nation Estonia, losing the game 9-3.

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Great Britain men’s bandy team at the recent World Championships in Vänersborg, Sweden Back row: # 6 Alex Smith, 65 Michael Whillock, 10 Martin Deacon (Captain) 98 Lewis Enfield, 35 Tim Smith, 5 Colin Jack, 8 Thomas Parker, 29 Christopher Hall. Front row: # 9 Nathan Gilbert, 18 Oscar Gillingham Aukner, 42 Alex Ward, 22 Robin Signeul, 15 Jacob Signeul, 77 Cormac Ahlstrom-Horgan 57 Oliver Corcoran.

What is bandy?
Bandy is a team sport, played on ice. It is similar to hockey, however it shares its most common traits with association football, ice hockey and field hockey. To play the game, skaters use a short, curved stick and direct a ball into the opposing team’s goal. The pitch is significantly bigger too, with 11 players playing the game at any one time, compared to the six in it’s close relative, ice hockey.

It has its origins in the East of England, with the first written rules published in 1882, before dying out after the First World War.

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Great Britain in action against Latvia at the World Bandy Championships in Vänersborg, Sweden

The sport saw the start of a revival at the beginning of 2018 when the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visited Sweden on a royal tour. While there, the royal couple met players and even played the game, taking shots against Swedish national goalkeeper Linda Oden.

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge playing bandy on 2018 royal tour of Sweden: //players.brightcove.net/2540076170001/B1Hli6KCG_default/index.html?videoId=5722267623001#t=43s