SHEFFIELD TIGERS: Rick Ashworth rides again at 10-year track

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FORMER Sheffield favourite Ricky Ashworth will return to Owlerton tomorrow for the first time since he left the club he served for 10 years.

The Berwick number one has had to wait for his return and fans will hope it will be third time lucky tomorrow night. The Bandits were due to be at Owlerton twice in April and both meetings fell foul to the weather.

Tigers co-boss David Hoggart was the man who had to tell Ashworth he wasn’t in their plans this year, and admitted that it was a difficult job.

He said: “Telling Ricky that he wasn’t in our plans was incredibly tough, as hard as anything I have had to do in speedway or business. Ricky wasn’t just a colleague or employee, he was a mate.

“As soon as we knew that Ricky wouldn’t be with us this year we focused on fixing him up elsewhere and I was delighted we managed to do that.

“The initial move to Plymouth went sour and we immediately got on the phone to Berwick and they agreed a deal with Ricky, and he has been excellent for them. We look forward to seeing him here but hopefully he won’t score too many points against us!”

Meanwhile, ex-Tiger and Sheffield born racer Simon Stead has announced plans for his testimonial meeting at Swindon in August. The Great Britain International won eight major honours with Sheffield in his four seasons, including two memorable league titles, and will celebrate his career at his current home track on August 16.

Already confirmed for the meeting are former Grand Prix star Matej Zagar, two-times British Champion Joe Screen and GB star Oliver Allen, and a host of star names are being lined up by Stead.