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Saturday, 19 April 2014

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Finnish rider Tero Aarnio replaces Rusty Harrison in Workington speedway team

Workington Comets have signed Finnish rider Tero Aarnio as a replacement for Rusty Harrison, who quit the club last week.

Tero Aarnio photo
Tero Aarnio

Aarnio, who was released by Scunthorpe in June, impressed around Derwent Park last season when riding as a guest and owner Keith Denham was quick to secure his services.

However, his signing came too late for this weekend’s matches against Somerset and Leicester, so he is due to make his debut away to Somerset next Friday.

Denham said: “Tero is a good reliable rider but unfortunately there was not a lot of choice around the speedway tracks. Tero is a good team player and did a good job as a guest for us last year. He will also be moving up here which helps cut down on travelling costs.”

Comets captain Richard Lawson has led the tributes to Harrison, who was second in the all-time appearance records behind Carl Stonehewer.

Lawson said: “It is a big loss as there was no-one better round Derwent Park than Rusty. He was a key team member and a genuinely nice guy.

“He was the kind of rider who would beat himself up after a bad race and you can’t do that too much but there were other things in his life and speedway was more of a hobby for him.

“He always looked out for you on the track. He was an experienced rider who always had something to say about set ups and we are going to miss that.

“His gating was never the best but he had countless rides coming from last and his final bend swoops were always special. He was a racer’s racer.”

Workington face Somerset in the Premier League tomorrow at Derwent Park at 7pm before travelling to Leicester on Sunday for the first leg of the quarter finals of the Knock Out Cup.

Comets will be missing both Harrison and Kenny Ingalls for tomorrow’s match as the American has been called into the USA team for the World Cup.

Sheffield’s Hugh Skidmore has been booked as a guest while rider replacement will operate for Harrison with everybody apart from Richard Lawson eligible to take his rides.

Skidmore will again deputise for Ingalls on Sunday unless the USA finish last in which case Ingalls will return.

Workington’s trio of Lawson, Roynon and Kyle Howarth were all due to take part in the British semi-final at Sheffield last night but that meeting was postponed.

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