Meet the Sheffield 'STAR' Tigers for 2000

Tigers 2000
Photograph by Geoff Ridsdale
Paul Lee Simon Stead Sean Wilson Robert Kessler Simon Cartwright
Adam Allott James Birkinshaw
Make your selection from the riders listed above

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Adam Allott
Adam AllottBorn: StockportCheshire19th March 1983
Opening CMA May CMAJune CMAJuly CMAAug CMASep CMAOct CMA
Son of Nicky, grandson of Guy, Adam is the latest of the Allott dynasty to ride for Sheffield.

Following his excellent results for the Owlerton Prowlers Adam was given his home debut as a stand-in for the injured Peter Boast on the 27th May against Exeter. A brilliant first ride saw him follow Simon Cartwright home for a 5-1, but engine problems meant no further points that night. Adam's outings with Buxton see him continue to develop and highlights include the Bronze helmet won from Andrew Appleton of Newport, and victory in the Hull 700 Individual event. With Peter Boast injured Adam finished the 1999 season as a regular in the team with his most impressive display being at Newport in the Young Shield final.

Adam will be spearheading the Sheffield Conference League team in 2000.

Adam scored 8 in the British U21 qualifier at Newport and may have qualified but for a 2-minute time exclusion.

photograph by:Geoff RidsdaleFastest time at Owlerton in 2000:63.2Aug 24
Highest scores: Home7+2Glasgow (PL) Away8+1Newcastle (PT)
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James Birkinshaw
James BirkinshawBorn: SheffieldSouth Yorkshire6th March 1980
Opening CMA May CMAJune CMAJuly CMAAug CMASep CMAOct CMA*3.85*3.52*3.51*3.51*
A moto-crosser since the age of 10, James attended the Sheffield re-opening with his father in 1991 & caught the speedway bug. His first bike was obtained from Chris Wilson, nephew of the ex-rider and current team manager Reg Wilson. James was thrown in at the deep end making his Premier League debut at Middlesborough on April 4 1996, going on to deputise for Sam Ermolenko on at least one further occasion.

The '97 Premier League campaign saw James struggling with equipment and then losing confidence. With the team struggling he was allowed to join Newcastle on loan in September as the Tigers promoters gambled on Derrol Keats. 1999 saw James join the new Workington set-up until a nasty burn injury sidelined him for a while. With his Workington team place filled James joined Edinburgh for a number of matches before seeing the season out riding for Stoke.

James will lead the Sheffield Conference League team into the year 2000.

James scored 10 in the British U21 qualifier at Newport but was beaten in the run-off for the last qualifying place by Blair Scott.

(*Green sheet average includes rides for Glasgow.)

photograph by:Geoff RidsdaleFastest time at Owlerton in 2000:64.8May 25
Highest scores: Home6+2Newcastle (PT) Away4+2Reading (PL)
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Simon Cartwright
Simon CartwrightBorn: NorthallertonNorth Yorkshire2nd November 1978
Opening CMA May CMAJune CMAJuly CMAAug CMASep CMAOct CMA
Son of former Halifax favourite Ian Cartwright and a former member of the Owlerton Prowlers, Simon rode for the Hull Vikings in his first year at Premier League level in '98 finishing the campaign with a creditable 3.25 average. Switching to Sheffield in 1999 his form for the Tigers improved dramatically and included victories over Jesper Olsen and from the back over David Walsh in the home match against Newcastle in June. His 7+3 on his debut at Glasgow's Ashfield track was instrumental in the Tigers glorious victory in Scotland and his high scores from the reserve berth helped the Tigers land both the League Championship and Young Shield. Simons average improved by over 2 points, and his Owlerton form was excellent resulting in a 7 point home average.

Simon rode in the Indoor Ice speedway series in America over the winter, and will need to be match fit from the start in order to maintain progress as he steps up into the team in 2000.

photograph by:Geoff RidsdaleFastest time at Owlerton in 2000:62.5Aug 10
Highest scores: Home12+1Exeter (PL) Away9Isle of Wight (PL)
For more info on Simon surf over to [STC-Racing]
click to surf to STC-Racing
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Robert Kessler
Robert KesslerBorn: CologneGermany5th April 1973
Opening CMA May CMAJune CMAJuly CMAAug CMASep CMAOct CMA
Joined Sheffield in mid-summer 1994, after some sparkling displays with Diedenbergen in the Bundesliga. Missed out on Britain in 1995 due to compulsory service in the German Army, returning to Owlerton for 1996 season when his heart stopping form achieved a 6.71 average & promoter Neil Machin's vote as 'Rider of the Year'. 1997 saw Robbie top the Sheffield charts with many impressive home maximums, and some brilliant performances away from home including an 18 point maximum at Newport in the League. Robbie took the Silver Helmet from Dave Mullet at Reading, defended it against Glen Cunningham and Stuart Robson before losing it to Neil Collins at Glasgow.

Robbie spent 1998 sidelined in Britain due to his very high average and his commitments in the Polish League which precluded him from the Sheffield line-up. He moved up to the Elite League for 1999 with the Kings Lynn Knights where he partnered World Champion Tony Rickardsson, and for Lodz in the Polish Second League competing in 13 matches for a 7.52 average.

Robbie was one of the earliest to take to the track in 2000 finishing 4th in the New Year Classic at Newport after falling in the final. Robbie missed the home clash with Newcastle and away at Workington after sustaining broken ribs when crashing while riding for Germany in the World Team Cup. He returned to the saddle against doctors orders for the Stoke match when he suffered an awkward fall in his 4th ride, but still bounced back to beat Paul Thorp in the last heat!

photograph by: Geoff RidsdaleFastest time at Owlerton in 2000:61.2June 29 & Sept 21
Highest scores: Home15 (max)Newcastle (PT) & Exeter (PL) Away16Hull (PT)
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Paul Lee
Paul LeeBorn: NottinghamNottinghamshire21st March1981
Opening CMA May CMAJune CMAJuly CMAAug CMASep CMAOct CMA
Following the closure of Long Eaton prior to the '98 season Paul spent the season riding for the Hull Vikings at New Craven Park, but failed to make the improvement his previous form had suggested. Paul turned down the opportunity of riding at his new parent track Workington in 1999 and despite overtures from Stoke, Wolverhampton and Ipswich elected to join the Tigers at his favourite track. Secured several guest bookings for Elite League sides including Kings Lynn and Coventry in which he aquitted himself admirably. Paul's best meeting at Owlerton was a glorious match winning 13+1 when the chips were down in the Young Shield semi-final first leg against Swindon. His 10 point score at Newport in the final was his best away performance and included a rare home defeat for Craig Watson.

Paul had a very successful winter riding in New Zealand winning seven of his eight meetings, and suffering machine problems in the other.

Paul rode to an untroubled 15 point maximum in the British U21 qualifyer at Newport. In the Edinburgh U21 final Paul scored 11 points beating team mate Simon Stead in the run-off for 3rd place to claim his place in the World Championship British semi-finals. Paul scored a creditable 11 points in his World U21 qualifier at Bydgoszcz in Poland and will travel to Pocking in Germany for the semi-final on 6 August.

photograph by: Geoff RidsdaleFastest time at Owlerton in 2000:62.0Aug 17
Highest scores: Home13+2 (max)Isle of Wight (PL) Away9+1Edinburgh (PT)
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Andrew Moore
Andrew MooreBorn:LincolnLincolnshire6th October1982
Opening CMA May CMAJune CMAJuly CMAAug CMASep CMAOct CMA
Andy was called into the side to cover for the injured James Birkinshaw, but failed to score in the Premier Trophy fixtures against arch rivals Hull. He was also pressed into service for the injury ravaged Berwick Bandits at Arena Essex where he picked up 2+1 from three rides.

Following further injuries sustained by James Birkinshaw in August Andy picked up more meetings, commencing with an impressive 6 point return against the IOW Islanders.

photograph by: Geoff RidsdaleFastest time at Owlerton in 2000:62.3Sept 28
Highest scores: Home7+1Hull (PPO) Away4+3Hull (PL)
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Simon Stead
Simon SteadBorn: SheffieldSouth Yorkshire25th April1982
Opening CMA May CMAJune CMAJuly CMAAug CMASep CMAOct CMA
When Peterborough moved into the Elite League for the 1999 season Simon wisely elected to move to his hometown club in the lower division. Partnering André all season Simon made tremendous strides and finished with a superior away average to heat leader Scott Smith.

Deciding again that he was not quite ready for an Elite League campaign Simon was the first Tiger to sign up for 2000 before commencing his Australian trip. Simon starts the 2000 campaign as a heat leader and hopefully will be fully fit following a nasty crash in one of his meetings down-under which left him with a gashed arm. Finished second to Brent Collyer in the Queensland State Championship.

Simon scored 11 points in the British U21 final at Edinburgh but lost the 3rd place run-off to team mate Paul Lee. Simon scored 9 points in the World U21 qualifier at Mseno in the Czech Repulic losing to Hungarian Janos Golenya in a run-off.

photograph by: Geoff RidsdaleFastest time at Owlerton in 2000:61.0Aug 24
Highest scores: Home15(max)Arena Essex (PL) Away12+1Glasgow (PT)
To keep in touch with Simon & his supporters visit the Simon Stead chatline
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Sean Wilson
Sean WilsonBorn: YorkNorth Yorkshire7th November1969
Opening CMA May CMAJune CMAJuly CMAAug CMASep CMAOct CMA
An ex-Sheffield junior Sean made his debut for the Tigers back in 1986, joining Bradford when Sheffield were forced to close. Following Bradford's demise Sean spent 2 unhappy years making up the numbers in the Elite League before returning to his first club for the 1999 Premier League season.

Sheffield had attempted to sign him in 1998 but were vetoed because of his high average. A dismal end to 1998 while riding for Belle Vue made the drop possible and the early weeks of last season found a revitalised Sean, happy to be wanted by his club and proud to be made captain. Sean's enthusiasm proved infectious and his point scoring prowess on track was matched only by his inspirational presence in the pits.

Sheffield fans are eagerly waiting the competition between Sean and Robbie to determine who will be the top Tiger in 2000.

Sean started his Polish season in style with a 15 point maximum for Lublin as they beat Warsaw 49 - 40.

World Championship trail...after attempting to withdraw from the World Championships in order to concentrate on his club fixtures but being threatened by a ban if he did so, Sean applied himself to the British semi-finals finishing top qualifier by a clear three points. At a very wet Brandon Sean went on to score 7 points in the British Final to qualify for the Overseas final, where he scored 8 to qualify for the Inter-Continental to be staged at Holsted in Denmark on 12 August.

photograph by: Geoff RidsdaleFastest time at Owlerton in 2000:60.7September 21
Highest scores: Home18(max)Newcastle (PL)Away16Workington (PT) & Exeter (PL)
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