NEWS Thursday 21st December 2017, 8:00am
Speedway supporters were surprised recently to read that promising 25 year old Matt Williamson didn’t have a berth for the 2018 season. Well that is no longer the case as the Parsons Peebles Monarchs have made Matt their sixth team member to be announced for the 2018 season.
He said “I’m over the moon. Obviously it’s been quite a nervous winter waiting for the phone to ring, and when it finally did and it was Edinburgh I was absolutely ecstatic. Obviously Edinburgh is one of the best clubs in the league and they are a winning team, a team that likes to win, and as a rider you want to be part of that. I’m really looking forward to it.”
Matt was one of the successes under the reserve rules of the last couple of seasons, and at one point had raised his average above 6 before going in to the top five and finishing on 4.85. It seems likely that most teams assumed he would be back in Cumbria next season. Matt is surprised himself but ready for the next phase of his career. “I’m not sure why I’m not there, I’ve had two fantastic seasons at Workington and improved so much there. I haven’t had too much contact from them. I’m not sure how they have built the team, but it must be a case of either they didn’t want me or they couldn’t fit me in. Obviously I have had some great seasons there but I’m looking forward to a new challenge.
“I am a very good big track rider so I think it will benefit me tremendously coming to Edinburgh and honing my skills on a smaller track. Craig Cook told me I should come to a track like Edinburgh and master all the trades. Hopefully this will bring my career on even further.
“I can ride Buxton well, I think having been a motocross rider and riding so many different tracks helps me adapt to anything. Hopefully we can get a good practise in before the season starts at Edinburgh.”
Not surprisingly the Edinburgh rider he knows best is former Comet Ricky Wells. “I know Ricky Wells extremely well and I’m sure he will give me some guidance, so I don’t think it will be long before I’m dialled in at Armadale. I got 9 points for Workington there at the start of last season so as soon as I’ve had a few meetings under my belt, I’ll be doing that on a regular basis.
“Ricky even stayed with us for a while. I don’t know the others well yet, but I’m an easy-going guy so I will soon get on with them! I’m a northern lad, not Scottish but my family is descended from Scots. I’m looking forward to it and hope this is the start of a long term relationship with the Monarchs.”
Matt finished the 2017 season on the injured list but he has no concerns over his foot injury. “In my last meeting I was riding an older bike that I keep for Buxton. Because of fixture clashes I hadn’t been to Buxton for quite some time. It was just one of these things, the clutch stuck and I looped the bike on the start, and the bike fell right on my foot. I broke the talus bone at the top of the foot. I’m 100% recovered from that, and just started a new gym membership the other day. As soon as we are past New Year I’ll start my training – I’ve always trained really hard and been in good condition.
“The motocross bikes will soon be back out, and as soon as the really cold weather is gone I’ll be back out on the speedway bike. Come March, we’ll be ready.”
Williamson is noted for his smart turn-out and professional preparation. He says “My dad and I keep my machinery in really good order, and for the season just gone we built completely brand new bikes. So my stuff is already really, really good. We will strip them right down and go through them, anything that needs replacing gets replaced. I got a few different engines for different tracks so I will get them dialled in for Edinburgh. I always turn up with my stuff right.
“My orange race suit comes from my motocross days so everyone knows me for that and it has become a kind of trademark for me.
“I’m out of National League now because I want to progress. I would love to get a Premiership ride as soon as I’ve earned it and I’m ready for it, nothing’s come up yet but I hope to carry on next season the way I finished last year and then I’m sure I will get the chance.”
The signing is subject to BSPA approval and Matt will start on a 4.85 average.