Speedway: Teen starlet unfazed by Tigers pressure

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Josh Bates says he won’t feel any added pressure riding for his local club after joining Sheffield.

Bates, aged 18, is from Barnsley and was pleased to sign for the club after initially looking set for a move to Elite League Swindon.

But when family members took over at Owlerton, he was quick to secure a switch to the club and he went through his paces alongside his new team-mates on Monday.

He will be back tomorrow for the club’s press and practice – and he knows there will be plenty of attention on him as he lines up at reserve alongside Andre Compton.

He said: “Riding for my local club doesn’t bother me; I just blank everything out of my mind anyway when I’m racing.

“If I keep my head and concentrate then I could have a good year. My target is a four-and-a-half point average and if I get that then I’ll be happy.

“I can’t wait to get out there with Andre [Compton]; it’ll be special.

“We were up at Northside last week for a practice session and Andre was helping me, along with Joe Screen.”