Heathens BACK in National League
NATIONAL League Speedway will take place at both Wolverhampton and Birmingham next year - with a brand new club.Dudley Heathens will be entered into the third tier of British racing for the 2010 season with the two tracks staging home meetings between them on their behalf.
NATIONAL League Speedway will take place at both Wolverhampton and Birmingham next year - with a brand new club.
Dudley Heathens will be entered into the third tier of British racing for the 2010 season with the two tracks staging home meetings between them on their behalf.
The project automatically revives the famous nickname used by the old Cradley Heath club who ran at Dudley Wood Stadium between 1947-1995 before the land was sold for housing.
And club bosses are hoping regular league racing carrying the Heathens name will be supported by fans of Cradley, Wolves and Birmingham alike as the bid to find new ground for Cradley continues.
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The club have already appointed Will Pottinger as team manager. Pottinger is the grandson of former Cradley promoter Les and took charge of Heathens teams in challenge matches this year.
And Sky Sports TV presenter Nigel Pearson has been unveiled as the driving force behind the project as chairman, working closely with Wolverhampton chief Chris Van Straaten and Birmingham counterpart Gary Patchett.
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Said Pearson: "This has all come together very quickly. Chris, Gary and myself have been in dialogue over the idea for less than a month and we've tried to see pitfalls before going for it - but it's a win-win situation as far as we're concerned.
"To see the Heathens back in regular league racing is what a lot of people have wanted for many years and we are delighted to carry the name of Dudley. As well as providing enjoyment for a lot of people we also want to see Cradley return on a full-time basis in the future and if this acts as a reminder to Dudley Council throughout the 2010 season then it has to be a winner.
"Thanks to the co-operation of Chris and Gary and subject to BSPA approval we are now able to realise the dream of seeing a Heathens team back in league action. Now it's down to the fans to show us their support and we hope the fans of Wolverhampton and Birmingham also adopt Dudley as their second team."
Heathens will race their home meetings at Wolverhampton on a Tuesday night but their Birmingham-staged meetings are likely to be on a Wednesday.
A new website has already been launched and is available at www.dudleyspeedway.com which includes details of where to apply for season tickets.