BIRMINGHAM Brummies have bolstered their lineup for the 2019 Speedway season by announcing the return of fans favourite James Shanes.
The addition completes Laurence Rogers’ seven man lineup for the upcoming campaign, which will see the Brummies compete in the Speedway Great Britain Championship, with Shanes being handed the responsibility of captaincy.
On bringing the 21-year old back to the Perry Barr Stadium, Rogers was coy to hide his excitement at making the final addition to his side.
“Shanesie was an absolute delight to work with this year and we simply had to have him back at Birmingham in 2019,” he said.
“He rides the Perry Barr track so well, he gained experience at this level with Sheffield this year and we believe he is really going to kick on next season.”
Rogers also revealed that handing Shanes the role of captain was a fairly straightforward decision for both himself, and the club bosses, admitting: “We felt he would make an ideal captain as well; he’s a real team player, he’s already well known at the club and we really do think he’ll revel in his new role.”
The new signing could not believe his luck when answering the call from the Brummies.
“I was absolutely stunned to be honest with you,” said Shanes.
“It’s only going to be my second proper year in the Championship so I wasn’t expecting it at all.
“To be handed a return meant enough but to be asked to be captain of the club as well really is something special to me.”
Shanes also hailed the set-up at the club and expressed his delight to be returning.
“Perry Barr is a track I’ve always loved and Birmingham is a club I now love as well.
“Everyone there, whether it be the management, staff or supporters are amazing and it’s going to be good to move with them into the Championship.”
On his new team’s prospects for the 2019 season, Shanes said: “I think we’ve got a really solid side that will surprise a few people and I can’t wait to work with the group of riders we’ve got.”
The new club captain completes a Brummies line-up which includes the returning trio of Ulrich Ostergaard, Kyle Newman, Zach Wajtknecht; local boy Ashley Morris; Danish rider Tobias Thomsen and 2018 Italian Championship winner Paco Castagna.