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 Queensway Meadows

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tanya
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PostSubject: Queensway Meadows   Thu Jul 17, 2014 4:31 pm

Big Welcome for Newport
by Bob Radford (Speedway Star)


At least 200 fans turned out on Monday night to  hear of Tim Stone's plans to bring speedway back to Newport after an absence of 20 years.

Former Newport stars Alby Golden, Jon Erskine, Bob Hughes, Cyril Francis, Brian Woodward and Peter Harris turned out to lend their support and other riders present included Paul Fry (Exeter), Scott Pegler (Swindon) and Reading number one Tony Olsson and his team-mate Phil Morris.

Stone, who impressed by speaking to Olsson in fluent Swedish, outlined his plans after meeting the BSPA Management Committee at Rugby earlier in the day.  

He explained that a 900-seater covered grandstand will go in first at the 7.3 acre Queensway Meadows site, which is just a few minutes off junction 24 of the M4.  

The track will be to FIM specifications and is expected to be around 300 metres long.  Former skipper Golden suggested some banking was necessary and was told it would be a minimum of half a metre.

Stone purchased 1,300, 17 turnstiles and lighting from the old Somerton Park stadium when it was demolished.  "I will be relieved to use them at last because storing  them has been quite a job," he joked.

"We hope to be up and running in March, the track will start to go in after Christmas when the contractors are off-site so that we don't get in each other's way.

Depending on the weather, we hope to be up and running in late March, though it will be more likely be in April.  The worst scenario is early May.

"I am open to suggestions for a stadium name but Queensway Meadows indicates the locality.  I don't want to call it Somerton park Mark Two, and this track will have proper corners.  I want it to be fair to all comers.

Because of deadlines, track lighting may not be in place for much of the first year.  

"My preferences is for Friday nights, but initially we will have to use Sunday afternoons.  We will run in the Premier and also enter a team in the Conference.

"Both the Borough of Newport and the police have been very supportive.  We have permission to run two days a week, with further use on application, and I am considering an offer from a rugby club to come in with us - but I pledge that it will not result in a square track," he said.

"We will be talking to breweries, local companies with sponsorship potential and we have a lot to offer the town, South Wales as a whole, and local commerce and business," he said.

Stone already knows the name of his team manager and potential rider signings but, for obvious reasons, could not reveal them now.

On a team name, he preferred Wasps, but added that sponsorship might change that.  "I don't like Dragons because all the Welsh teams with that name have closed - including Newport in 1977, " he explained.

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