Hampel set to sign for Witches
POLISH star Jarek Hampel is set to ride for the Ipswich Evening Star Witches in 2008.The former world under-21 champion confirmed today that he is “90 per cent” sure he will sign a contract in England in 2008 and that Ipswich are the club he expects to do a deal with.
By Mike Bacon
POLISH star Jarek Hampel is set to ride for the Ipswich Evening Star Witches in 2008.
The former world under-21 champion confirmed today that he is “90 per cent” sure he will sign a contract in England in 2008 and that Ipswich are the club he expects to do a deal with.
Hampel, 25, has flirted with the idea of riding for the Witches over past seasons, since his last appearance for the Suffolk side in 2003. But this time it looks all systems go.
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“I definitely want to ride in England next year,” Hampel said.
“And I will be speaking to John and Chris Louis first. I have not spoken to them yet and I plan to have a holiday soon.
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“But on my return I will be in contact with Ipswich. I don't want to talk to other clubs - I want to talk just to Ipswich.”
The news will come as a huge boost to Witches fans who would love to see Hampel, still the Foxhall track record holder, back in Ipswich bodycolours.
And with an average of just under seven points, the Lodz-born racer, who has been left out of next season's Grand Prix, could prove a real snip.
Indeed it is that omission from the 2008 GP series that has no doubt tipped the balance for Hampel wanting to come back to England.
“I am of course disappointed not to be in the GP series next season,” he added.
“But also I only had about 20 meetings in Poland and 20 in Sweden last season and I need more than that. England will provide me with that. Of course I don't have the Grand Prix, but I needed more meetings anyhow.”
Hampel, an Ipswich asset, suffered a broken hand in a track crash two months ago which terminated his 2007 season early.
But he's fully fit again now and is clearly gearing himself up for 2008.
“I want to get organised and by early December I want to start preparing.”
Meanwhile Peterborough manager Trevor Swales has hit out at reports he doesn't expect Danny King to be at the East of England Showground next season.
King, an Ipswich asset, went on loan to the Panthers last season, but Swales was reported as saying he didn't expect him to be back at Peterborough in 2008.
“I was completely misquoted,” Swales said.
“I was attending a fans' forum and we asked fans who they would like to see back next year. Danny King was a favourite. I just remarked that we couldn't guarantee that because he is not our rider. Next minute I know it's been reported I can't see Danny coming back. I didn't say that.”