Diehard Redcar Bears fan CLAIRE JAMES is excited for the new season and want you to feel the buzz too. Here she gives us a beginners guide of what to expect at a meeting: noise, drama and a sensory assault.

The countdown is on!! We have a full team, I have had both my vaccines and my car has a full tank of fuel! Let’s go!!

After over a year without speedway we are just days away from the the buzz and the roar and the tapes going up. Excited is an understatement! Redcar Bears are being widely tipped as one of the strongest in the Championship and I agree. We are right in there with a chance, And it would be amazing to win more silverware.

We came out on top in the Speedway Championship Knockout Cup final against Newcastle Diamonds in our last meeting way back in October 2019 to finish the season with a trophy. That feels so long ago and we are all desperate to get back.

The Bears start the new season away at Edinburgh Monarchs tonight (Friday, May 28) and they return to home shale at the South Tees Motorsport Park on Sunday for the return home leg where tapes are up at 2pm. You should come along and try it.

Speedway is noisy. Very noisy. And there is the smell of the engines too. And there is a cloud of dust thrown up from the shale track as the bikes roar around the tight track and go sliding into corners. It assaults all the senses. It is brilliant. Get yourself along. Come and have a taste of the action and the feel the adrenaline close up.

Speedway sounds complicated to a newbee but it’s not once you get used to it (although some of the rules can be baffling) and so long as you fill your scorecard in you will be able to keep up with everything. Here are the basics:

So four riders per race, two home riders and two away riders and each heat is four laps of the track.

It is three points to the winner, two points for second and one point for third. Last place gets zero.

If home riders come first and second they get five points and the away team just one and the fans go wild!

There are 15 races per meeting with the points all added up to see which team win. If all 15 races are 5-1 it would be 75-15 but even with home advantage and knowing the bends believe me that never happens!

There are crashes as riders jockey for position and try to overtake on the straight while riders can lose control on corners and go sliding out and there are sometimes mechanical problems so nothing can be taken for granted.

And each side is allowed a ‘Tactical Ride’ after heat four if they are 10 points or more behind. Then a nominated rider can step in and any points scored are doubled. It is like playing your joker.

The TR rider starts from the starting tapes and any race points scored are doubled 

Going into the final heat at 42-42 makes it a great finale and the atmosphere can be electric.

As I said it sounds complicated but once you get started it’s as easy as 3-2-1.

So get yourselves to the Media Prima Arena on a Friday night (some exceptions, please see website) to experience the thrill of a night at the Speedway, you won’t be disappointed