Bellego banned for Sky meeting with Diamonds

Berwick Bandits Speedway'David Bellego
Berwick Bandits Speedway'David Bellego

Berwick are due to host Newcastle in a SKY TV meeting at Shielfield on Tuesday - the first time the cameras have covered the action at Shielfield Park

But a bizarre ruling means the Bandits go into the meeting without one of their riders - even though he will be at the track as a spectator.

David Bellego has been prevented from competing because of an unfortunate three-day ban imposed by the FFM (Federation Francaise de Motocyclisme).

“The French federation has entered a team in the World Team Cup, and faced an elimination round at Miskolc, in Hungary, on Monday night,” explained Bandits’ team boss Ian Rae.

“They told David he was to be included in their team, but he declined the offer as it meant a round trip of nearly 3,000 to the far side of Hungary, near to the border with Ukraine, and of course he had our meeting pencilled in for just 24 hours later.

“He was also asked to pay for the trip himself as the FFM were not offering to pay any part of his travelling expenses.

“He couldn’t afford to go by road with his bikes, which would have prevented him being back here for the match on Tuesday as well as wrecking his bank account, so David told the FFM – ages ago, as soon as he was notified of their intention to include him -- it just wasn’t possible for him to accept selection.

“He said he felt obliged to race for the Bandits, who are his main source of speedway income, the next night.

“Sadly, the French federation then informed him that, if he was not going to accept the ‘honour’ of selection for the WTC meeting, his racing licence would be suspended for three days (Sunday, Monday and Tuesday).

“We appealed the ban, but it was a no-no, and so he was unable to race for us against the Diamonds.”

In his absence Berwick will use rider replacement to cover.