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Promoter says speedway could return by April after Odsal visit

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update.

ODSAL

We have, since the early 2000's tried to work every avenue to return motorsport to Odsal stadium since it re opened for RFL with the Bulls in the Super League - to date on four different occasions, the most recent a few years ago alongside former speedway promoter, Tony Mole where we came closest in agreeing in principle with then Bulls franchise holders, O.K Bulls to utilise the stadium. At that point we gained the necessary permissions from Bradford council for this project to actually happen! Sadly that opportunity evaporated as then OK Bulls 'failed' and, since then it has been a tragic litany of events including the sacriligous removal of the main infrastructure - ie plate fence which was a 'scandal'
The latter incumbants were also contacted however had no interest at that time and themselves failed around 18 months ago which, in essence saw the club saved and move to Dewsbury to survive. That meant the whole future of Odsal became hugely uncertain. However, to the credit of leaseholders RFL, dating back to later last year, they began looking at improving the viability of the stadium to which this current journey commenced. I have nothing but praise for the professionalism and promptness and courtesy extended by the RFL to listen to and disseminate our developing plans to try and move this forward. Huge credit must also go to Mark Sawyer and his team in 'rescuing' the Bulls and kept it 'breathing' without which there would be no future and one should not take lightly the commitment that involved.

We have been working on the Odsal project now since the start of 2020, colliding with the greatest challenge the globe has encountered with the Pandemic.

Since February 2020, almost monthly discussions have continued to progress with detailed business plans and a thorough investment costing to enable getting the project to where it currently sits.

Discussions have more recently intensified currently towards concluding discussions and resolving a secure license agreement to progress in 2021. Once hopefully satisfactorily resolved, discussions will then commence with Bradford City Council over confirming planning aspects and permissions together with the Safety Action Group towards procuring it's safety certificate. This will be the final part of the process and we are careful not to prejudge that outcome, but may only be understood once all parties reach an agreement.

The plan remains to provide a facility for both Stock Car Racing and Speedway however costings have been undertaken for both a tarmac surface as well as shale. The latter being essential for the inclusion of speedway albeit significant cost advantages of tarmac for stock car racing exist. The final decision on surface will be made once agreement has been concluded.

Startrax are very keen to see Speedway included at Odsal however acknowledges that the current economic position for speedway and indeed the country is a major factor. However, promoter Steve Rees says 'we remain receptive to proposals for speedway in 2021 and beyond, as we have now much more visibility on the future and costings, we are happy to engage with potential operators; Rees added 'After 23 years absence of motorsport at Odsal we believe there will be the huge interest and support it should command and deserves, that is certainly evident from the stock car family - we are now in a position to see the end game and therefore open discussions with regards speedway with some more certainty'

As far as 2021 is concerned, subject to concluding commercial agreements with the RFL and thereafter in coming weeks, subject to the necessary permissions being obtained from Bradford Council, the latter being the final hurdle, it remains our intent to commence a 16 week installation plan with accredited contractors early in the New Year with a target opening of April. Rees said ' The investment is significant particularly in the current economic uncertainties however, after 23 years, this may well be the final and only opportunity to return to Odsal and both sports must in my opinion embrace it' adding 'Odsal is unique, it is primarily an iconic Rugby League stadium which needs a future securing for it and the city to see it's club return. We have met Mark Sawyer earlier in the year from Bradford Bulls and we had a refreshing and constructive discussion with regards the future and look forward at some point to pooling resources to stabilise the future of Odsal commercially.

This has been a long and intense journey and we approach a finishing line which either way will be a defining moment for Motorsport and whether we can get this over the line. Whilst discussions move into 'final laps' I must thank Mr Sutton from the RFL and Mark Sawyer for courtesies extended to allow us to present and elaborate detailed plans for Odsal and whatever the final conclusion evolves, all sides have worked towards a positive outcome. The removal of infrastructure referred to earlier has made this a much bigger cost and risk complicating matters - and, in the current economic environment, the investment required now to make this happen of around £200,000 [ and that excludes operational costs ongoing ] even more challenging and much higher elevated risk. As a sport we must come together. We are approaching a penultimate platform of optimistically agreeing commercial terms which then permits us to move forward to the final due diligence and involving Bradford City Council to confirm validity and requirements for motorsport returning to Odsal which, once we reach agreement with the RFL, will then quite promptly follow and will confirm the future of Odsal. This has been a 'long, weary, costly and time consuming process which has been driven by tenacity and the 'dream' of the Wembley of the North rebooting. Whatever the final outcome, years of speculation now have at last some foundations for optimism and will hopefully and shortly move forward to the final objective. For two decades the resurrection of Odsal by some [ and justifiable sentiment ] has been viewed with cynicism as to it actually happening. We are now the closest ever in 23 years. We must together come together to embrace that challenge - if and when required.

A Northern renaissance is now visible with, potentially in the next 12 months two quality venues at Owlerton Stadium Sheffield complimented by hopefully, the North 're-booted' with the addition of the long regarded 'Wembley of the North' - That really is something to shout about - within 30 miles of each other!

PLEASE HELP US, OUR EFFORTS BY LIKING & JOINING US ON FACEBOOK / SOCIAL MEDIA AND SHARING WIDELY AND WITHIN THE SPEEDWAY COMMUNITY - Thank you

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Another update.

latest update from Startrax tonight.
 

Odsal - making progress!

Just as an update, we have had a further lengthy discussion this afternoon with the RFL discussing commercial and legal matters and we reconvene for fine tuning next week. We are aiming for a final resolution early November. Discussions with the RFL throughout have been 'warm' and there is a definate 'will' from both parties to get to an amenable agreement that is acceptable to the RFL, ourselves and obviously the future for Odsal Stadium.

Once we have completed these parts of the discussion, we can then move forward to discussions with Bradford City Council.  Our plans to commence work, subject to us squaring all circles looks positive for a new year start and subject to necessary permissions being agreeable in the right time scale, our aim is to open up Easter Saturday 2021 - Whilst there remains caveots, if's and but's - let me assure you these are reducing as talks continue.

We would have not progressed thus far without the engagement of the RFL for which again, we thank them for the opportunity.

Keep optimistic - keep safe

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 must be good news for odsal,£2.5 million to be spent and first race meet 3rd of april 2021.

 

By means of an update, the hard miles continue step by step in trying to make Odsal a reality with further meetings later this week as part of that process. It is a huge and complex conundrum and requires several parties coming together to make it happen - but we are convinced that ALL share the same vision. The investment required - and risk - by ALL parties involved in re-booting Odsal is also significant, by my calculations, given the costs to us over the period, we probably could open from scratch a new track, however again, finding a site and, it would be basic. Losing major venues has been a historic problem with redevelopment much more lucrative than in some cases existing operations - the sport has always faced that challenge, it is easy to profligate solutions and 'what should be done' but ultimately will rely on investors to take any risk involved particularly in the difficult environment the pandemic has created economically and the very challenge we faced with Belle Vue. 12 months ago, our original plan was to see Speedway return to Odsal [ and that remains very much a focus ] as both sports deserve to be at this iconic stadium however, as 2020 has unfolded, the commercial consequences of the Pandemic understandably has seen interest in Speedway but no firm commitment until finances recover. We even looked at the possibilities of 'us' running at NL to provide a platform but that seemingly is a non starter so we have had to accept more risk initially to 'return' motorsport to be viable at Odsal whilst leaving a door ajar for speedway in the future.
There is a lot of speculation currently with regards eventual predictions for 2021 in terms of fixture planning. Much, as has been suggested, the roll out of the Covid 19 will be a major influence in planning. Only yesterday Oliver Dowds met football yet no date was set for a return of crowds. However, considerable discussion behind the scenes is ongoing but it is unlikely there will be a fixture list available until late January to allow more visibility. In our own case, we are not in any position to plan as Bradford is a fundamental part of our ongoing plans and to conclude Odsal will take 'as long as it takes' and with thought given the significant risk and investment costs. The 2021 WF weekend is already stated and other major events will follow a similar date/time pattern and all being well championship events may be announced earlier post Christmas. Speedway are targeting an 'Easter' return and BriSCA's visibility is similar, late March/April. Other than 'elite' sports, few as yet are in a position to publish final plans for 2021.
I think aspirations for BriSCA F1 to be a 'National sport' may well be outdated. Whilst in the 50's and 60's it was somewhat Southern dominated, Banger racing took over very early in the South and despite attempts in the 1970's to ressurect the South with Scota and FISCA, these never gained traction much as the Spedeworth V8's either never became dominant.
National Saloons developed a different route and are not as such 'national' - they have three historic heartlands, Scotland, East Anglia and South West with odd guest events, similar could be said National Hot Rods. For 50 years F1 has been a stronghold in the Midlands and North - and very successful and similar 'guest events' are staged. Scotland is very much an area of interest and BriSCA tries to support it - however, chicken and egg is how to develop a strength of drivers in a region without a reliance on large numbers of drivers undertaking prohibitively expensive journeys regularly. The heartland has again over those 50 years 'lost' venues for redevelopment beyond the sports control without natural replacements available but over periods of time typically sees some regeneration. The issue is the cost of finding and opening new venues, Odsal will be a £2.5m commitment + over it's duration, times have changed. It's not even about ORCi/non ORCi, it's about availability of the right venues in the right areas. For example another [any ] track in the East is not overly an answer, it is Midlands and North where we need to be.
There is much speculation with regards Deane and his plans which equally are not concluded and dialogue will continue.
With regards the V8's and NMSC, whatever the outcome of discussion with Inca/Spede I wouldn't jump to conclusions that they would be adversely affected in any way.
2020 has been a devastating year for all however, we have seen the strength, will and community of the sport in seeing a mini season actually staged - a triumph itself and something I certainly am hugely proud of for all of us. We will face up to 2021 and beyond and things will emerge as we move forward a few months,. There can never ever be perfect solutions to every challenge presented, things need time to adapt as we did after the loss of Coventry. The sport needs 'promoters' to operate tracks and the will to face that challenge and that in itself will help create drivers and fans. Between us, we have to create the right environment to attract people into the sport with some positivity and encouragement.
BriSCA F1 has a good future, there remans a lot of discussion and it will be the outcomes of the many and varied talks that shape 2021 and beyond, however, there will be one and by nature of the beast there will be change as there has been over the last 40 years +
God willing SHEFFIELD will open on Sunday 4th April 2021 - and in coming weeks, we will be delighted if we can provide an opening date at Odsal on 3rd - a lot of water to flow under the bridge, ALL promoters are working hard on 21.

 


" CRASH, BANG, WALLOP WITH TOO MANY CARS ON TOO SMALL A TRACK"

By means of an update, the hard miles continue step by step in trying to make Odsal a reality with further meetings later this week as part of that process. It is a huge and complex conundrum and requires several parties coming together to make it happen - but we are convinced that ALL share the same vision. The investment required - and risk - by ALL parties involved in re-booting Odsal is also significant, by my calculations, given the costs to us over the period, we probably could open from scratch a new track, however again, finding a site and, it would be basic. Losing major venues has been a historic problem with redevelopment much more lucrative than in some cases existing operations - the sport has always faced that challenge, it is easy to profligate solutions and 'what should be done' but ultimately will rely on investors to take any risk involved particularly in the difficult environment the pandemic has created economically and the very challenge we faced with Belle Vue. 12 months ago, our original plan was to see Speedway return to Odsal [ and that remains very much a focus ] as both sports deserve to be at this iconic stadium however, as 2020 has unfolded, the commercial consequences of the Pandemic understandably has seen interest in Speedway but no firm commitment until finances recover. We even looked at the possibilities of 'us' running at NL to provide a platform but that seemingly is a non starter so we have had to accept more risk initially to 'return' motorsport to be viable at Odsal whilst leaving a door ajar for speedway in the future.
There is a lot of speculation currently with regards eventual predictions for 2021 in terms of fixture planning. Much, as has been suggested, the roll out of the Covid 19 will be a major influence in planning. Only yesterday Oliver Dowds met football yet no date was set for a return of crowds. However, considerable discussion behind the scenes is ongoing but it is unlikely there will be a fixture list available until late January to allow more visibility. In our own case, we are not in any position to plan as Bradford is a fundamental part of our ongoing plans and to conclude Odsal will take 'as long as it takes' and with thought given the significant risk and investment costs. The 2021 WF weekend is already stated and other major events will follow a similar date/time pattern and all being well championship events may be announced earlier post Christmas. Speedway are targeting an 'Easter' return and BriSCA's visibility is similar, late March/April. Other than 'elite' sports, few as yet are in a position to publish final plans for 2021.
I think aspirations for BriSCA F1 to be a 'National sport' may well be outdated. Whilst in the 50's and 60's it was somewhat Southern dominated, Banger racing took over very early in the South and despite attempts in the 1970's to ressurect the South with Scota and FISCA, these never gained traction much as the Spedeworth V8's either never became dominant.
National Saloons developed a different route and are not as such 'national' - they have three historic heartlands, Scotland, East Anglia and South West with odd guest events, similar could be said National Hot Rods. For 50 years F1 has been a stronghold in the Midlands and North - and very successful and similar 'guest events' are staged. Scotland is very much an area of interest and BriSCA tries to support it - however, chicken and egg is how to develop a strength of drivers in a region without a reliance on large numbers of drivers undertaking prohibitively expensive journeys regularly. The heartland has again over those 50 years 'lost' venues for redevelopment beyond the sports control without natural replacements available but over periods of time typically sees some regeneration. The issue is the cost of finding and opening new venues, Odsal will be a £2.5m commitment + over it's duration, times have changed. It's not even about ORCi/non ORCi, it's about availability of the right venues in the right areas. For example another [any ] track in the East is not overly an answer, it is Midlands and North where we need to be.
There is much speculation with regards Deane and his plans which equally are not concluded and dialogue will continue.
With regards the V8's and NMSC, whatever the outcome of discussion with Inca/Spede I wouldn't jump to conclusions that they would be adversely affected in any way.
2020 has been a devastating year for all however, we have seen the strength, will and community of the sport in seeing a mini season actually staged - a triumph itself and something I certainly am hugely proud of for all of us. We will face up to 2021 and beyond and things will emerge as we move forward a few months,. There can never ever be perfect solutions to every challenge presented, things need time to adapt as we did after the loss of Coventry. The sport needs 'promoters' to operate tracks and the will to face that challenge and that in itself will help create drivers and fans. Between us, we have to create the right environment to attract people into the sport with some positivity and encouragement.
BriSCA F1 has a good future, there remans a lot of discussion and it will be the outcomes of the many and varied talks that shape 2021 and beyond, however, there will be one and by nature of the beast there will be change as there has been over the last 40 years +
God willing SHEFFIELD will open on Sunday 4th April 2021 - and in coming weeks, we will be delighted if we can provide an opening date at Odsal on 3rd - a lot of water to flow under the bridge, ALL promoters are working hard on 21.

 


" CRASH, BANG, WALLOP WITH TOO MANY CARS ON TOO SMALL A TRACK"

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Looks like its all going to happen, making odsal great again.

page 3 .https://forum.stoxnet.com/topic/33619-odsal/

 

It is almost 12 months since we commenced again our aspiration to return Stock Cars to Odsal, the fourth attempt since 2001, having come very,very close in 2013 only to fail when OK Bulls went into administration.
Therefore this has been a lot of hard work, and for a few months in my own mind may have been again, speculative. However, we have continually negotiated with integrity from RFL COO Mr Tony Sutton who we cannot thank enough for his investment and interest and, yesterday, we have concluded a secure long term arrangement commercially that could see the sport secure at Odsal for 12 years. The agreement reached will require ratification by the RFL board early next month of which we are very positive. We held further discussions yesterday 'pm' with the new Bulls shareholders who, currently have a huge workload commitment in bidding for the Bulls to return in the Super League. From the beginning of this journey, we sought a commitment that both us and the Bulls approached Odsal 'jointly'and together and what came across very clearly from the Bulls stakeholders [ again to whom we thank them for heir time ] is a shared vision to 'save' Odsal' and see it return to it's former glory. That really is positive fundamentally to us as it is about the commitment of our sports to regenerate Odsal for the city of Bradford.
Our next stage will be opening discussions with Bradford Council who are aware of the plans, to secure the necessary permissions we require and clarification of what was established in 2013 in terms of planning consent etc. We plan to move things along rapidly and are working to be able to offer more clarity on Sunday 6th December as, if we manage to tick all the boxes, it is our ambition to open the doors on Saturday 3rd April 2021. We are 'almost' there! Whilst discussion has been detailed and taken some 12 months, reality is dawning that this has been the 'easy bit!'
The dedication and work required to re-open it, refurbishment is massive and planning for that is 'underway' however 'just' to open the doors for sport will require joint investment of at least £500,000. When we get to this stage, hopefully early next month, we will be asking the whole sport to play it's part - in a similar way to the outpouring of support offered to help restore Coventry and will be seeking volunteers to help with the project from tradespeople and the community to assist with this huge task with work anticipated to commence late January 21. Hopefully on 6th we will be able to complete the vision and make Odsal a reality after 23 years.

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