Meet the 2003 Sheffield 'PIRTEK' Tigers

New team photo
Photograph by Geoff Ridsdale
Ben Wilson André Compton James Birkinshaw Sean Wilson Andy Moore Scott Smith Mark Thompson Ricky Ashworth
(kneeling)Benji Compton   Richard Hall
Make your selection from the riders listed above

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Ricky Ashworth
Ricky Ashworth Born: SalfordGreater Manchester17th August 1982
Opening CMA May CMAJune CMAJuly CMAAug CMASep CMAOct CMA
4.77 4.65 7.05 7.10 7.66 7.62 7.95

Ricky joined the Tigers in 2002 less than 12 months after first taking up speedway.

Fast starting Ricky had a good solid first season, albeit with the odd mechanical problem, and was a major factor in the Tiger's fortunes. Starts the 2003 season at reserve with his sights set firmly on a team place.

The new green sheet averages came into force on 15th June and Ricky made his debut as No.2 at Rye House, but struggled with two retirements and just 2 points in the Tigers narrow win. He rode for the Breat Britain U21 team in the test match wins against Sweden scoring 4+1 at Reading, and a commendable 7 at Wolverhampton despite taking a heavy tumble while attempting to pass Peter Ljung. Consistently good scoring from Ricky resulted in him wresting the third heat-leader slot from Andy Moore in August.

Current average from official fixtures = 7.95

photograph by:Geoff Ridsdale Fastest time at Owlerton in 2002:62.4Sept 19
Fastest time at Owlerton in 2003: 60.5September 25
Highest scores: Home19 IOW (PL) Away13+2 Berwick (PL)
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James Birkinshaw
James Birkinshaw Born: SheffieldSouth Yorkshire6th March 1980
Opening CMA May CMAJune CMAJuly CMAAug CMASep CMAOct CMA
5.48 5.35 5.35 4.50 5.07 4.65 5.06
James makes the transition to second string following a succesful season in 2002. Posted a clear indication of his progress with a scintillating heat 5 against Belle Vue when he passed first Jesper Olsen and then Steve Johnston two laps later.

James crashed headlong into the fence on Good Friday but luckily escaped with only facial injuries and returned to the saddle for the victory over the Coventry Bees. The June green-sheets averages saw James drop to reserve but a good run could see his confidence restored.

Current average from official fixtures = 5.06

photograph by:Geoff Ridsdale Fastest time at Owlerton in 2002:63.1Sept 19
Fastest time at Owlerton in 2003: 62.6October 16
Highest scores: Home10+1 Kings Lynn (KOC) Away5+3 Kings Lynn (PL)
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Ross Brady
Ross Brady Born: Winchburgh West Lothian17th February 1981
Opening CMA May CMAJune CMAJuly CMAAug CMASep CMAOct CMA
    7.14 7.14 7.14 5.59 5.66
Ross began his speedway at the Linlithgow circuit before being scooped up by Peterborough for their Conference League side. After a year on loan to Mildenhall when he also rode occasionally for Berwick in the Premier League, Ross then joined Edinburgh in 1998, initially on loan before becoming a full Monarch's asset the following year. Extra to their plans Ross was transfered to Hull but in 2002 he was destined to miss nearly half of the season with a broken elbow. The Viking's boardroom reshuffle saw him on the move again, this time back to his roots as he became Glasgow's most expensive signing.

Both Ross and the Glasgow team in general made a poor start to the season, and his subsequent knee injury prompted Ross to jump before he was pushed. Now fully fit he has joined the 'Pirtek' Tigers replacing Scott Smith and after a slowish start he is beginning to display his old form.

Current average from official fixtures = 5.66

photograph by:Geoff Ridsdale Fastest time at Owlerton in 2002: 62.5June 20
Fastest time at Owlerton in 2003: 61.9September 4
Highest scores: Home12+1 Arena Essex (KOC) Away 7+2 Exeter (PL)
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André Compton
André Compton Born:DewsburyYorkshire15th May1977
Opening CMA May CMAJune CMAJuly CMAAug CMASep CMAOct CMA
8.30 8.09 8.00 8.25 8.22 8.35  

Having helped steer the Tigers to their 1999 Championship win André moved up to the Elite League with Peterborough in 2000, but became a victim of his teams poor initial form. Joining Newcastle he skippered the Diamonds to Championship success in 2001, and invariably performed well against the Tigers. When The Diamonds changed their race day to Sunday for 2003 André was looking for another team and jumped at the chance of rejoining the Tigers, signing a full contract a few weeks into the season.

André, who is doubling up with the Poole Pirates in the Elite league this year, top scored for the Tigers in the British League Cup clash with the Aces at Belle Vue with some excellent racing. If he was making a point to the Aces management, then he did it very well.

A bad tumble in the home match against Stoke in August saw André aggravate an old ankle injury causing him to miss a number of matches.

Current average from official fixtures = 8.35

photograph by:   Fastest time at Owlerton in 2002:62.2April 11
Fastest time at Owlerton in 2003: 60.8May 8
Highest scores: Home15 (max)Kings Lynn (PL) Away15Belle Vue (BLC)
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Andrew Moore
Andrew Moore Born:LincolnLincolnshire6th October1982
Opening CMA May CMAJune CMAJuly CMAAug CMASep CMAOct CMA
6.08 5.93 7.30 7.32 7.49 7.49 7.95

Having doubled up for to the Tigers & Prowlers in 2001 Andy became a full time Tiger in 2002, and although he didn't quite achieve his aim of claiming a heat-leader slot he maintained his progress all throughout the year finishing with the 3rd highest average from away fixtures ahead of both Lee and Scud.

The June green sheets saw Andy make his debut as heat-leader with 11 from 4 rides in the Tigers narrow victory at Rye House, and then claim 19 points and a Golden Double Tactical Substitute win at Kings Lynn as the Tigers knocked the Stars out. Buster Chapman was so convinced that Andy was on an illegal engine that he coughed up 550 for an official protest. The engine was found to be 498cc and both Andy and his tuner were quite pleased by that (after all the hassle it caused)!

Andy rode for the Breat Britain U21 team in the test match victories against Sweden scoring 7 at Reading and 8 at Wolverhampton.

For more info on Andrew surf over to [andrewmoorespeedway.com] click to surf to andrewmoorespeedway.com

Current average from official fixtures = 7.95

photograph by: Geoff Ridsdale Fastest time at Owlerton in 2002:62.1June 6
Fastest time at Owlerton in 2003: 60.4September 18
Highest scores: Home14+1 (max)Reading (PL) Away19Kings Lynn (KOC)
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Scott Smith
Scott Smith Born: SheffieldSouth Yorkshire29th September 1972
Opening CMA May CMAJune CMAJuly CMAAug CMASep CMAOct CMA
7.46 7.28 6.00        
Local lad Scott graduated from being the team mascot in the mid-eighties, to a full member of the Sheffield junior team. He moved to the Belle Vue junior side when Sheffield closed in 1989, and joined Div.1 Cradley in 1991. British U21 champion in 1992 he returned to the Tigers lair in 1996 when his spectacular and flamboyant form notched him a 6.23 average.

Scud looked destined to sit 2003 out until the bombshell of Lee Complin's retirement threw team building plans awry. His critics were silenced in no uncertain terms as he passed Elite League Aces Jason Lyons and Ales Dryml in our home British League Cup clash with Belle Vue. Scud's poor form on the away circuits, especially zero returns at Edinburgh and Newport and the ensuing criticism from Neil Machin led to Scud withdrawing his services and subsequently joining Exeter as a replacement for the injured Michael Coles.

Current average from official fixtures = 6.08

photograph by:Geoff Ridsdale Fastest time at Owlerton in 2002: 61.5June 6
Fastest time at Owlerton in 2003: 61.5May 15
Highest scores: Home14 Newcastle (PL) Away8 Workington (PL)
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Ben Wilson
Ben Wilson Born:SheffieldSouth Yorkshire15th March1986
Opening CMA May CMAJune CMAJuly CMAAug CMASep CMAOct CMA
3.00 3.00 3.00 3.47 3.47   3.30

Grandson of Roy Wilson who runs the Sheffield training track. Ben joined the Prowlers on his 15th birthday in March 2001. On his debut at Peterborough Ben went to the tapes for his first official race and sped to a dream win. Ben continues to make good progress and has already begun to perfect the 'Peter Carr' third bend dive.

Ben got the nod to start the season wearing the Tigers No.7 jacket but will face stern challenges from his fellow Prowlers.

Ben picked up an injury to his groin in a crash at Hull and missed three fixtures while waiting for it to heal, and is currently out of the saddle after breaking both wrists when he was forced into the fence at Reading...

Current average from official fixtures = 3.30

photograph by: Geoff Ridsdale Fastest time at Owlerton in 2002:64.6May 20
Fastest time at Owlerton in 2003: 64.0April 14 (Conference League)
Highest scores: Home6+3 Coventry (BLC) &
Kings Lynn (KOC) & Glasgow (PL)
Away5+3 Stoke (Ch) & Workington (PL)
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Sean Wilson
Sean Wilson Born: YorkNorth Yorkshire7th November1969
Opening CMA May CMAJune CMAJuly CMAAug CMASep CMAOct CMA
10.41 10.16 10.16 9.24 9.62 9.82 9.98

Sean inspired the Tigers again in 2002 to a triple crown winning season. A patch of unbeatable form in July led to Sean being called up to represent his country in the World Team Cup, but a shoulder injury sustained in Poland, and aggravated at Somerset and Newport saw Sean struggling. Like a trooper he rode through the pain scoring 17 in the away win at Berwick which sealed a closely contested League Championship victory.

Sean had an operation to reattach his shoulder muscle in February and missed the opening matches of the season while working to regain fitness. His return to the saddle was perhaps a little premature and resulted in some uncharacteristic low scores, and it was June before we saw Sean back to his best as his maximum at Rye House inspired to Tigers to a narrow last gasp win.

Sean carded a perfect 18 point maximum in the home clash against Exeter.

Current average from official fixtures = 9.98

photograph by: Geoff Ridsdale Fastest time at Owlerton in 2002:61.4May 16
Fastest time at Owlerton in 2003: 60.2September 25
Highest scores: Home 18(max) Exeter & Reading (PL) Away 17+1(max) Rye House (PL)
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