LEWIS Spratt is getting revved up for his latest taste of life in front of packed auditoriums as the UK Arenacross Tour kicks off in Belfast’s SSE Arena this coming weekend.
The ‘Omagh Flyer’ will race on the Tour for the third time. He will take in rounds in Belfast, Aberdeen, Birmingham and London’s Wermbley Arena and he’s relishing the opportunity to race on the tight, technical tracks in front of huge crowds once again.
“I can’t wait! The Arenacross has a real good atmosphere and it’s a real good experience, especially when it’s in your ‘home’ town,” he enthused.
“You can hear the crowd because they are so close to the track, which made me a wee bit nervous the first time I did it, but now that I’m a bit older I’m just there to race.
“And it’s nice to get to race in other cities and Wembley is the big one, it’s probably got the best atmosphere!”
The 14-year-old enjoyed a stellar outdoor season in 2022, winning the Irish big wheel 85cc title, finishing ninth overall in the British Championship and he was second in the Ulster series, despite not competing in every round. He then represented Ireland at the Coupe de l’Avenir in Belgium where he was his country’s top performer.
And while he admits that he has to alter his style due to the indoor track’s tighter layout, he’s hoping to convert that stunning summer form into winter success when he’s keen to emulate or even improve upon last year’s results.
The Omagh High School pupil was credited with a fourth placed finish in Belfast in 2022 but that was corrected to third
after the event when the organisers realised there was a fault with the timing system.
Unfortunately, that meant he didn’t get the chance to stand on the podium at ‘home’, something he would like to do this coming weekend.
“Because the tracks are much tighter and more technical, you have to think much more because you never really get a rest,” he explained.
“This year I’m taking a more competitive stab at it because I’d like to try and get a podium because last year in Belfast I got third but they messed up the timing, so it would be nice to do that.”
Meanwhile, 10-year-old Newmills lad, Daniel Devine will also compete during the Tour, making his debut in Belfast this weekend on his 65cc machine.