Speedway: Sheffield Tigers skipper Simon Stead aiming for Riders' title on his home track
Sheffield skipper Simon Stead is desperate to win back the Premier League Riders' Championship crown in front of his adoring home crowd next month.
Owlerton will once again welcome the top stars from the second tier of British racing for the hugely popular event on Sunday, September 11 (5.30).
Stead stormed to an unforgettable triumph in the showpiece meeting back in 2014 to spark jubilant scenes on the terraces.
Having missed out on the chance to defend his title due to injury last year, he is eager to seize his first opportunity to regain the famous trophy.
With five World Cup finalists in action, the hometown hero knows he will need to recapture his dominant Owlerton form to climb to the top of the rostrum.
But he is looking to put together a strong run to ensure he heads into the meeting “firing on all cylinders”.
“I’m definitely looking forward to the PLRC,” said Stead. “It’s the pinnacle individual event at this level, so I’ll be going all out to try and perform well.
“It was really frustrating not to be able to take part due to injury last year, especially after winning it the year before. It’s the toughest line-up I think I’ve seen for a long time, and looking through the line-up you just can’t pick a winner.
“With the talent that’s in there it’s clear it’s going to be a very difficult meeting, and I know I’m going to have to be at my very, very best to have a chance.
“I’ll keep taking one meeting at a time for Sheffield and keep working on things so that hopefully I’m firing on all cylinders come September 11.
“It’s been an up and down season and I’ve been having a few issues, but I feel although I’m getting there, especially at home, in the last few weeks.
“I know that on my day I’m capable of beating anyone at Owlerton, but it will be one of those where I need everything to come together pretty perfectly on the night if I’m going to come out on top.”
Stead and Sheffield suffered frustration last night as their clash with local rivals Scunthorpe at Owlerton was postponed due to rain.
They will be back in action when they host Rye House next Thursday (7.30).