Wednesday August 10, 2020
PROMOTER Ged Rathbone has spoken of his disappointment after learning that Peterborough captain Ulrich Ostergaard will not be able to defend his Premier League Riders' Championship crown.

The 'T Balfe Construction' Panthers skipper roared to glory at Owlerton Stadium in Sheffield last year, but he has failed to make the cut for this year's event.

The line-up features the top man from all 13 second-tier clubs - that's number one Craig Cook in Panthers' case - along with the riders boasting the next three highest-averages in the league.

They are Richard Lawson of Glasgow (8.51), Jason Garity of Sheffield (8.41) and Newcastle rider Steve Worrall (8.41). Ostergaard's current average is just below those figures on 8.08, but Rathbone reckons the reigning champion should be included.

He said: "I feel really disappointed for Ulrich who enjoyed one of the best days of his long career when winning the PLRC last year.

"It meant so much to someone who has been a fantastic servant to British speedway and I feel he deserves the chance to be able to defend his title.

"It is certainly something I will be bringing up with the British Speedway Promoters' Association management committee as it needs looking at in future years."

But Rathbone is still hopeful of the trophy remaining in Panthers' possession courtesy of Cook.

He added: "I've said many times that there is no better rider at Premier League level than Craig. If he turns up at his best, he will take a lot of beating.

"It was a huge honour for the club to see one of our riders win the PLRC title and I certainly hope it can happen again."

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