14th February 2019
BRITISH senior and under-21 champion Robert Lambert has joined forces with national junior boss Neil Vatcher to give the Young Lions continental experience at a training camp in Germany next month.
The duo have joined forces with Lambert’s Polish Ekstraliga club Lublin and the Diedenbergen White Tigers from Germany to stage the training days at Neuenknick, near Hannover, on March 15-17.
It’s unclear which riders will be taking part at this stage, but the duo hope to help GB’s stars of the future hone their skills on and off the track.
Lambert said: “The first two days will be practising with analysis afterwards and also there will be gym work and training for the riders to show them what they need to be doing to be prepared and ready for the season.
“We are also trying to get some mental training in there as well – the sports psychology side of speedway.
“We want to do some reaction testing as well – everything to try and push the youngsters along and help their progression into the main senior squad.
“On March 17, there will be a practice meeting. That will be without points and it won’t be an official meeting. That will just be a practice meeting between the teams – we’re not sure of what the structure for this practice meeting will be and we don’t know fully the numbers yet.
“But we’re doing this training camp alongside the other two teams to engage the younger riders in other areas and get them to see the German team and the high standard of the Ekstraliga teams in Poland.”
Lambert took out a German licence at the age of 14 to gain himself senior experience on the continent and is now reaping the rewards.
Last year he came within four laps of helping the Lions win their first world title at the Speedway of Nations Final in Wroclaw. He also became the first rider to win British senior and junior titles in the same season and finished third in the Speedway European Championship.
So he’s keen for other young Brits to get a taste of the opportunities that helped him progress so rapidly.
He said: “We just want to show we are trying to do things for the younger riders. Nobody else has put things forward to take us abroad and go practising.
“Obviously I was lucky and went to a week’s training camp when I was about 14. I went over there and did it and that sort of opened my eyes.
“Now I am in a position where I have people I can talk to over there and I know people at the tracks to be able to push it and get it in motion.
“I want to give the young guns coming through that extra helping hand, if they have opportunity to do something like this or don’t know the people to talk to if they want to sort it out.
“It’ll hopefully get their faces seen on the continent and they’ll get a feel of how the competition is out there.
“These are Neil’s ideas to further the youngsters and also my ideas as well from a rider’s perspective. We’re trying to do it together to push the youngsters forward.”
Vatcher is also excited about the chance to take his Young Lions to Europe again and is delighted to be working on the plans with Lambert.
He said: “This is a great opportunity for the Young British riders to have some experience of both travelling to Europe, and riding a European circuit.
“It is great for Robert to be involved in and the all the riders look up Robert and aspire to be at the same level as him, winning British titles and competing at the highest level, racing against the best all over Europe.
“We have been trying to get the Young Lions as much experience in Europe as possible and, with the help of Robert, this is another fantastic opportunity.”
Any riders who would like to attend are asked to contact Neil Vatcher.
Article written by Paul Burbidge