The End Of An Era:
It was back in 1997 that the Long Eaton Invaders speedway club completed their last Premier League campaign at the old Station Road Stadium in the town. Speedway racing had been staged there, on and off, since 1929, and had put Long Eaton firmly on the map within Britain’s motorsport community. It was therefore a major blow for speedway fans and the end of an era when the site was finally given over to a housing development a few years ago, signalling the end of speedway racing in the town.
Wind the clock forward to 2011:
A full fourteen years after the last wheel was turned in anger by a Long Eaton rider the Invaders returned to the shale as members of the then newly-formed Midlands League, enjoying a successful campaign which saw them crowned 2011 Champions.
Hosting their home meetings at Leicester Speedway's excellent new Beaumont Park stadium may not be as ideal as their former base at Station Road, and the Invaders are currently only competing at amateur status……the Midlands League is a strictly amateur one, aimed at offering competitive racing to mainly young and relatively inexperienced riders, who will hopefully go on to become the speedway stars of the future. It is, however, the first - and most importantly, significant - step in resurrecting this great club.
We are once again very grateful to Leicester Speedway for allowing us to continue to race our home meetings at their Beaumont Leys track.
In 2012 the Invaders management have again brought together a squad of riders who will compete to defend their league title in the re-named Midland Development League, which has now been expanded from five to eight teams :
Long Eaton Invaders
Mercian Vikings (based at Coventry)
Milton Keynes Knights
Belle Vue Colts
The teams will compete on and a home and away basis with teams of four riders in matches of six heats duration. These matches will be raced as “second half” events, following scheduled professional matches at the various host circuits.
In addition to the league meetings it is intended to also include some fifteen heat challenge (ie friendly) matches at a level comparable to that of the National League,
to gauge support and viability with a view to making an application for professional National League status in 2013.
The medium term objective is to re-familiarise the Invaders name to the British speedway fraternity, whilst also continuing our comprehensive pursuit for a new and permanent venue to bring speedway racing back to the Long Eaton area.
The club is a non-profit organisation. The future aim is for the basis of the club to be formed on a shareholder offer and corporate sponsorship. Any profits generated by the activities of the club could then be re-invested into either club expansion or towards the campaign to find a permanent base for the team.
Long Eaton Invaders, being a community based club, also aims to offer affordable speedway to existing Long Eaton speedway followers and, hopefully, to a new generation of fans, whilst offering a share initiative, giving fans the opportunity to have a broader say in the activities of the club.
We remain committed to offering British riders an opportunity to compete on a national level under the Invaders banner whilst fulfilling the ongoing commitment to the development of British speedway talent.
The Long Eaton Project, as it is known, is still in its in infancy, with the primary objective being a permanent site for a stadium which the Invaders can call their own. A number of locations have been identified, including an area which forms part of the Donington Park motor racing complex, and all possibilities are being investigated.
We do, however, have to be realistic and accept that this objective is not going to be achievable overnight. Therefore, the decision has been taken to consolidate with another season in the Midland Development League.
We must continue to focus our efforts on increasing public awareness and raising the profile of the club. In this way we can build on the successful foundations laid last season to reach our ultimate goal of seeing Long Eaton once again competing at a professional league speedway level.
Further Information :
Fot the latest news, fixtures, rider profiles, directions to Beaumont Park, etc please visit the official Long Eaton Invaders website, at www.longeatoninvaders.co.uk
The site also has links to various contacts within the organisation, and local speedway supporter groups.
Why not join the invasion ?