Meet the SHEFFIELD 'Tigers' 2021

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Troy Matthew Batchelor
Troy Batchelor Born: Brisbane Queensland, Australia 29th August 1987
Init GS June GS July GS Aug GS Sep GS Oct GS
8.82 8.63 8.33 7.39 6.84

Australian Under-16 Champion in 2003, Queensland State Champion in 2007, South Australia State Champion in 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, Australian Champion in 2013, Elite League Riders Champion in 2014 and Victoria State Champion in 2016.

Troy started his British career with King's Lynn and Eastbourne in 2005, switching to Coventry the following year. A year with Poole in 2007 before joining Swindon in 2008 and joining Ipswich in 2009. Two years with Peterborough before he switched back to Swindon for 2012-2015. Back to King's Lynn in 2016 for two seasons and then to Swindon in 2018.

Troy's teams have seen a good deal of success winning the KO Cup in 2005, 2006 and 2019, the Young Shield in 2005, the League Championship in 2006, 2012 and 2019, the Premier Trophy in 2006, and the Elite Shield in 2008 and 2018.

He's represented Australia in 17 World Cup meetings scoring 148 points and winning 2 silver and 2 bronze medals.

Individually he has appeared in 28 Grand Prix scoring 183 points and making it through to 3 GPO finals

As Nicki Pedersen was now unable to ride in Britain due to Polish League restrictions the Tigers were looking to restructure the team. With the Robins taking a year out due to their Abbey Stadium being redeveloped Troy took little persuading when invited to join the Tigers for 2021. He started the season at the top of the leagues averages, but following poor form he has been able to sign for Championship club Kent.

Average from official fixtures in 2021 = 5.67

Maximums: Paid = 1 Home

photograph by: Geoff Ridsdale Fastest times at Owlerton in 2021: 60.3  24 June
in 2006: 63.3  26 October
Highest scores: Home 13+2 v King's Lynn (B) Away 12+1 v Wolverhampton (A)
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Josh Bates
Josh Bates Born: Barnsley South Yorkshire 1st February 1996
Init GS June GS July GS Aug GS Sep GS Oct GS
4* 4* 4* 4* -

Josh joined us from Swindon in 2014 when his uncle became co-promoter at Sheffield and the highlight of his season was winning the British U21 title at Wolverhampton. A winter in Australia set him up well for 2015 riding in all three Leagues for Wolverhampton, Sheffield and Birmingham, although he surrendered his U21 British crown, pipped at the post by Kyle Howarth who ironically became his new Tigers team mate in 2016.

Josh joined another of his Tigers team mates, Jason Garrity doubling up with Elite League Coventry in 2016 and he started for the Tigers in the no.4 race jacket with a personal target of adding another 2 points to his average. He failed, but even maintaining your average when stepping up to into the team should be considered progress and went he on to regain his U21 British title (albeit on his home track). A 12 point return at Pocking (Germany) put him into the World U21 final, but a dislocated collarbone hampered his preparations. After a 6th place in the World U21 final first leg at King's Lynn he was then sidetracked with concussion after a fall in the Redcar match.

Josh was contemplating a change of track for 2017 until his uncle persuaded him that he was needed by the Tigers and just couldn't be replaced by a better prospect on his average. Following news that he'd been selected as reserve for the Grand Prix in Cardiff he then missed the away match at Glasgow due to illness. He saved the day in the home match against Workington with a season best 16.

Josh missed the 2018 season following a fractured vertebrae sustained in a sledging accident. 2019 saw him get a 7.30 average from 15 matches in the Championship for Leicester, and 2.75 from 5 matches for Premier Peterborough.

Josh is our 'Rising Star' in 2021 and is doubling with Leicester in the Championship, but was sidelined with nerve damage after dislocating his shoulder at Monmore Green and then missed the rest of the season as he needed the metalwork from his injured back removing.

Official meetings average in 2021 = 2.67

Maximums: tba

photograph by: Geoff Ridsdale Fastest times at Owlerton in 2021: tba   tba
in 2016: 60.4  14 July
Highest scores: Home 2 v Wolverhampton (A) Away 5 v Belle Vue (A)
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Adam Ellis
Adam Ellis Born: Marmande France 21st March 1966
Init GS June GS July GS Aug GS Sep GS Oct GS
6.33 6.49 6.55 7.25 7.67

Adam was born in France of British parents who ran a bar over there. His first club in 2013 was the IOW and he doubled up with Ipswich. Continuing with the Witches he moved to Lakeside in 2014. Continuing with Lakeside he moved to Birmingham in 2015 winning both the 4TT and League Cup. More success in 2016 winning the Elite Shield with Poole and the KO Cup with Eastbourne.

He helped Swindon win the League in 2017, and then the Elite Shield in 2018 and both the League and KO Cup in 2019! Adam joins his ex-Swindon team mate Troy Batchelor with the Tigers and is sure to be made most welcome, and has also signed for Championship side Scunthorpe.

Adam beat Max Fricke for the last podium position in the SGP qualifier in Terenzano, Italy
and then top scored with 14 from 5 rides as GB won the European Pairs Qualifier at Debrecen in Hungary ahead of both Denmark and Slovenia.

Adam became British Champion in August top scoring with 13 points and defeating home riders Dan Bewley and Charles Wright in the final at Belle Vue.

Official meetings average in 2021 = 8.21

photograph by: Charlotte Flanigan Fastest times at Owlerton in 2021: 59.8   2 September
in 2019: 60.56   1 September
Highest scores: Home 16 v Peterborough (A) Away 16 v Ipswich (A)
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Jack Holder
Jack Holder Born: Appin New South Wales, Australia 23 March 1996
Init GS June July Aug Sep Oct
7.49 7.75 7.74 8.08 8.20

Brother of James and 2012 World Champion Chris, Jack first rode in Britain for Plymouth in 2015. He doubled up with Peterborough and Poole in 2017, moved to Somerset in 2018 and finished the 2019 season at the top of the Premiership with the Poole Pirates and second only to Brady Kurtz in their averages.

Jack has an impressive record at Owlerton. His first visit with Plymouth in 2015 saw him score 9 from 4 rides (including a double points heat win). He repeated the double points heat win a year later scoring 14+1 from 5 rides, and also finished 6th with 10 points in the PLRC. His last two visits with Peterborough in 2017 resulted in paid 24 points from 10 rides giving him an Owlerton average of 9.33, or 8.00 excluding bonus points.

Jack has had a good end to the year winning the New South Wales Championship from his brother Chris, and the Jason Crump Classic on Boxing Day from Rohan Tungate, Erik Riss and Brady Kurtz.

Jack was injured in a crash involving Nikki Pedersen while riding for Torun in the Polish Extra League, but returned to help the Tigers to away wins at both King's Lynn and Ipswich in August.

Current average from official fixtures in 2021 = 8.93

Maximums: Full = 1 Home, Paid = 1 Home

photograph by: Geoff Ridsdale Fastest times at Owlerton in 2021: 60.2 2 September
in 2017: 61.4 22 June
Highest scores: Home 15 v King's Lynn (B) Away 19 v Belle Vue (A)
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Kyle Howarth
Kyle Howarth Born: Ashton-under-Lyne Greater Manchester 11th February 1994
Init GS June GS July GS Aug GS Sep GS Oct GS
5.58 5.86 5.81 6.39 6.47

Kyle was an accomplished grass track and motocross competitor before turning his attention to amateur speedway in 2008. Queensland U21 State Champion in 2011 and 12 and British U21 champion in 2015, his previous clubs include Scunthorpe, Poole, Somerset, Edinburgh and Swindon but he has become an important part of the Wolverhampton Elite league team.

Kyle first doubled down with the Tigers in 2016. He soon settled in at Owlerton and after solving some machine issues in mid-season he stepped up to assume the captaincy and inspired the Tigers into the play offs, and all the way through to the final despite his team mates dropping like flies around him.

A fantastic season 2017 saw Kyle steer us to Championship success and the Championship Pairs title with Lasse. Having put an impressive 1.44 onto his average he replaced Josh Grajczonek as the Tigers No.1 for 2018 after a lengthy stand-off with Workington who hold his contract.

Kyle and his close friend Charles Wright won the Championship Pairs title at Somerset on the eve of the British Grand Prix but his average took a dip and he lost the no.1 jacket. Sheffield then suffered four consecutive home defeats with Kyle unable to fathom the problem.

Captaining the Tigers again in 2019 Kyle missed the Somerset match after having an extraordinary drug test result while guesting for King's Lynn at Eastbourne at the end of June. This turned out to be a trace of the co-codamol he was given in hospital after dislocating his shoulder when he crashed in the British semi-final at Redcar.

Kyle dislocated it again in the re-arranged away match at Eastbourne on the eve of the Championship Riders final and had to sit out the end of the season. With racing suspended for 2020 Kyle took the opportunity to have surgery on his shoulder and reported it successful when riding in the Peter Craven memorial meeting at Belle Vue. In December he repaid the help he had received from the Ben Fund with a sponsored cycle ride from his home town Swindon to Manchester, just 156 miles in grotty weather!

When the Tigers elected to move up to the Premiership Kyle had to choose between Wolverhampton and Sheffield, and became the first name on the Tigers team sheet. He also rides for Leicester in the Championship.

Official meetings average from 2021 = 6.26

photograph by: Geoff Ridsdale Fastest times at Owlerton in 2021: 60.4   2 September
in 2019: 60.82   11 August
Highest scores: Home 10+1 v King's Lynn (A) Away 8+3 v Belle Vue (A)
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Danyon Hume
Danyon Hume Born: Wendover Buckinghamshire 25 July 1996
Init GS June July Aug Sept Oct
n/a n/a n/a 3* 3*

Danyon first rode for Rye House in 2015 before joing Ipswich, Birmingham and then Leicester. Riding for Poole in the Championship in 2021 he was called up by Sheffield when Josh Bates needed surgery on his back.

Official meetings average from 2021 = 3.35

photograph by: Geoff Ridsdale Fastest times at Owlerton in 2021: 61.8   2 September
in 2019: 62.06   5 May
Highest scores: Home 8+2 v King's Lynn 'B' Away 6 v Ipswich 'B' (guest)
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Stefan Leeder Nielsen
Poole team photo Born: Esbjerg Denmark 31st October 1994
Init GS June July Aug Sept Oct
n/a n/a n/a 3.00 3.00

Stefan first rode in the UK in 2011 for the Sheffield and Scunthorpe Conference teams. He joined Ipswich in 2012 but also had outings with Mildenhall. 2013 saw him riding for Somerset, and in 2014 he was with Belle Vue and the Coventry Conference teams. 2015 Ipswich & Belle Vue. 2016 Swindon and Plymouth. 2017 Scunthorpe (2 matches). 2018 Poole and Scunthorpe. 2019 Scunthorpe and 1 outing for Swindon. 2021 he's been with the Poole Pirates in the Championship.

Stefan was the British U19 champion in both 2012 and 13 and replaces James Wright in the reserve position. He made a tremendous start to his career with Sheffield scoring paid 23 from his first two meetings but then crashed in the first heat riding for Poole at Birmingham in the Championship. Broken collar-bone, ribs and a punctured lung will probably rule him out for the rest of the season.

Official meetings average from 2021 = 6.00

photograph by: Geoff Ridsdale Fastest times at Owlerton in 2021: 61.19   12 August
in 2018: 61.62   19 April
Highest scores: Home 10+2 v Wolverhampton Away 6+2 v King's Lynn (A)
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Josh (Joshua) Pickering
Josh Pickering Born: Heddon Greta New South Wales, Australia 30th November 1996
Init GS June July Aug Sept Oct
n/a n/a 4.89 4.89 7.08

Josh has been riding in the UK since 2017 but his only club has been Edinburgh. The Tigers are giving him his first chance in the Premiership and he replaces fellow Aussie Justin Sedgmen.

Official meetings average from 2021 = 7.38

Maximums: Paid = 1 Home

photograph by: Geoff Ridsdale Fastest times at Owlerton in 2021: 60.2   26 August
in 2017: 62.44   20 August
Highest scores: Home 13+2 v King's Lynn (B) Away 12+1 v King's Lynn (A)
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Justin Maxwell Sedgmen
Justin Sedgmen Born: Mildura Victoria, Australia 17th February 1992
Init GS June GS July GS Aug GS Sep GS Oct GS
4.00 4.00 5.28 n/a n/a

Justin was South Australian U-16 champion in 2008 which prompted Somerset to give him his first chance in 2009. He rode for both Birmingham and Swindon in 2010, and Swindon, Newport and Plymouth in 2011. Victorian State champion in 2012 he rode for both Lakeside and Redcar over here. Triple winner with the Monarchs in 2014, and League champion again with them in 2015. He moved up a division with Swindon in 2016. Belle Vue and Rye House were his clubs in 2017 and returned north of the border with the Monarchs in 2019.

Justin's Grand Prix record is one appearance and four points.

Broc Nicol's injury left the Tigers looking to strengthen their line-up and along with Todd Kurtz who has a proven Owlerton record he will offer us more points scoring potential on the smaller away tracks.

Signing for Glasgow in the Championship 2021 Justin jumped at Simon's invite to rejoin the Tigers.

Official meetings average from 2021 = 4.30

photograph by: Geoff Ridsdale Fastest times at Owlerton in 2021: 60.8  24 June
in 2019: 61.4  11 September
Highest scores: Home 7+1 v Ipswich (A) Away 7+1 v Belle Vue (A)
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James Philip Wright
James Wright Born: Stockport Cheshire 13th June 1986
Init GS June GS July GS Aug GS Sep GS Oct GS
3.00 3.00 3.00 n/a n/a

James is the elder brother of Charles who rode for the Tigers in 2018 and the grandson of Jim Yacoby who rode for Liverpool and Bradford but chiefly Belle Vue. James began his career at Buxton in 2002 and doubled with Belle Vue in 2003 and Workington in 2004 becoming Conference Champion. He rode for the Comets and Aces for three years from 2005 and was Premier League Riders Champion in 2007.

Swindon was his club in 2008 winning the Elite Shield. He rode for the Aces (virtually his home town team) in 2009 and 10 and then the Comets, Brummies and Rebels in 2011. He was full time with Somerset in 2012 winning the League Cup before moving north to Glasgow for 2013. He moved closer to his Weston-Super-Mare base riding for Plymouth for two years from 2014 before family commitments saw him hanging up his leathers.

After returning to the saddle for Newcastle in 2020 James was honored to be offered a place with the Tigers by his ex-team mate Simon Stead and is quite a surprise addition to the team.

Official meetings average from 2021 = 2.77

photograph by: Geoff Ridsdale Fastest times at Owlerton in 2021: 61.0   1 July
in 2014: 62.2  18 September
Highest scores: Home 6+1 v Ipswich (A) Away 3+1 v Wolverhampton (A)
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