Speedway: Marek Grzyb on the U24 Ekstraliga. “This is what happens in any professional team sport”

In 2022, many significant changes will take place in Polish speedway, which can be boldly described as revolutionary. I am talking mainly about the new tournaments for players under 24. Each club from PGE Ekstraliga is obliged to create a team that is to be a direct base for the first team. Thanks to this, the coaches should not have problems with filling the holes in the squads, which have been a huge pain until now.

– Every president and trainer must have experienced it. If these players are missing, because they all have engagements at every level of the competition, and there are no free ones at a certain skill level, then even with certain injuries that plagued Stal Gorzów this year, it is very difficult to find a replacement. ZZ is a good solution, but with one injury. And then the entire project that we are preparing before the season with the involvement of sponsors may burst like a bubble for reasons that we are not able to predict. If there are more of these players at a certain level, it will be for the benefit of the entire discipline. And somewhere there is this fashion for speedway, more and more people say in other countries to reactivate various clubs, despite the fact that speedway is experiencing a difficult moment in the world. These players could create a back-up just in the event of these unfortunate events, such as injuries – said the president of Stal.

The creation of reserve teams that will compete in Ekstraliga U24 is possible thanks to the proceeds from the TV contract for PGE Ekstraliga broadcasting rights in the coming years. Part of the income is to be spent on training and building a base of young players.

– The clubs so far have not been rich enough to support six or seven players. And most of all, they were not so organized that they could, apart from the second league, where there was a guest institution, provide these players with starts. The other team provides one hundred percent of this. Of course, not everyone will find engagements in clubs. This background is supposed to be a kind of second squad, and in every professional team sport there is a staff base. This bench must be long enough to introduce new players in the event of random situations. Today speedway is limited to the fact that the president, counting the costs, provides a certain basic squad – four seniors, one U24 speedway rider, two juniors and one player under the eight. And these financial resources allocated to the training will give great opportunities to the training staffs in each club, and above all, make the league and the competition for squads more attractive – said Grzyb.

About David Martin

David Martin is the lead editor for Spark Chronicles. David has been working as a freelance journalist.

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