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Kent Kings set to sign British replacement for Nico Covatti due to Brexit

Kent Kings are set to go down the homegrown route to complete their 2021 rider line-up due to Brexit concerns.

Kings are working on a replacement for Nico Covatti, who’d been due to ride for the club in 2020 before the season was wiped out by coronavirus.

Kent Kings co-promoter Len Silver
Kent Kings co-promoter Len Silver

Co-promoter Len Silver believes Britain’s exit from the European Union may cause problems signing riders from the Continent.

He said: “Team news is pretty good in that all but one of chosen seven for 2020 will line up for us again.

“Currently, skipper Scott Nicholls, team manager Chris Hunt and myself are working on a replacement for Nico Covatti.

“We have decided that, if we can, to avoid Europeans - with Brexit making life tough for riders from the Continent coming in.”

Silver is optimistic next season will start on schedule as speedway looks to bounce back from the pandemic and there’s good news with all Championship clubs confirming their intention to compete.

“The cavalry are coming as the vaccine gives us hope,” said Silver.

“And the big hope for us all is that our speedway will start at Central Park on Tuesday, March 30 as planned, with Easter following right behind.

“We need to spread this news far and wide.

“All the clubs have confirmed they’ll come to the tapes in 2021.

“For Chris and myself it will be a learning year at Championship level, getting to know the riders just as we know those at National League level.

"We’re always aiming to track seven Kings who are competing at the top end of the table, improving year on year, just as we did in the lower league.”

Kent’s track is sure to be in good condition after Silver tracked down a replacement grader blade online.

His old one had broken and while a welding job got it working again, it had lost adjustment and was far from efficient.

Silver said: “I went on to my computer and Googled 'used graders' to see if there was something on the market that would do the job.

"Not being very good at internet stuff, I clicked on this and that without any success....then, I don't know how, I found a company in the North Midlands showing a picture of a grader blade almost exactly the same as mine, only fully working.

"A much better bet than trying to get my own machine usable so it did not take long for me to agree its purchase with delivery to Central Park in a few days' time.

"Imagine my surprise to discover that the blade had been in daily use at Stoke's Loomer Road track until its recent closure. No wonder it was exactly what I was looking for!"

Read more: The latest sports news in Kent

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