Work starts on widening of Berwick speedway track

Work started this week on the widening of the speedway track at Berwick, which the club hopes will make for better racing around Shielfield Park.

Wednesday, 15th January 2020, 7:09 am
Updated Tuesday, 4th February 2020, 12:33 pm
Diggers removing the turf at Shielfield.

For many years the supporters and club have championed the idea of widening the track to increase the spectacle.

It has often been felt the long straights have been too narrow, as has the entrance into the bends.

Stadium landlords Berwick Rangers (with their Supporters’ Club the leaseholders) have in the past rejected calls to narrow the width of the football pitch to enable track reshaping to take place.

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But this winter new dialogue has opened up between the two respective clubs and the upshot has been that the Rangers have agreed to the pitch being moved in on both sides, thereby allowing the track to be widened.

This week the diggers moved in and work started on removing the turf.

Bandits’ co-owner Scott Courtney said: “We are delighted to have begun work on widening the the track with the main focus being on the entrances and exits of the bends and the straights.

“This is a massive step forward for the club and it proves once again that we are committed to giving the fans the best experience we possibly can. There’s no secret that the bikes have evolved over the last 10 years to a point where some of the trickier, narrower and tighter circuits almost struggle to contain the bikes and although we can’t all emulate the new Belle Vue, I feel it’s time that we do we all we can to make our track shapes and surfaces flow better.

“I’m fully aware not every club has the privilege of making these adjustments and Jamie (Courtney) has done an amazing job in making sure things have been put together in a way that doesn’t hinder the football and helps us move forward in trying to make our track as racy and exciting as possible for the upcoming season.

“We would like to say a big thanks to George Hepburn who is making sure the work is done to the highest standard and of course our track curator Ian Rae and his team who are once again grafting hard to make sure we can enjoy the best version of Shielfield Park come the end of March. We would also to thank Berwick Rangers for their co-operation and we wish them all the very best moving forward.”