Mudgway to manage the Cubs
Former rider and adopted Teessider Jade Mudgway has been appointed Redcar Cubs team manager in what will be an expanded Northern Junior League next season.
The 28 year-old New Zealander, who has first came to the UK in 2007 to race for the Cubs and eventually went on the represent the Premier League Bears, replaces Kevin Keay who will be inundated with other responsibilities this year as the club’s promoter at the Media Prima Arena.
Mudgway also rode for Glasgow, Berwick and Buxton before being forced into premature retirement by a head injury last season
Speaking from his home in Ingleby Barwick, where he has settled down with wife Helen and one-year old twin boys, Mudgway stressed:
“I’m very happy to be involved again and always pleased to help out the juniors.
“Hopefully I can pass on the benefit of my experience, both as a rider and technically, advising them on setting up their bikes.”
Mudgway is a qualified motorcycle mechanic by trade and will take overall charge of the side, who are set to contest six-heat mini-matches during the second halves of meetings at Redcar, as well as at Workington, Northside (a small training track on the outskirts of the West Cumbrian town), Berwick, Newcastle and league newcomers Glasgow.
Currently nomadic Halifax are also involved and will stage their matches at Scunthorpe, while negotiations are ongoing to include another homeless club Castleford.
“They were hoping to stage their fixtures at Redcar,” explained Keay, who had always been a huge advocate of junior development and has, for several years, been heavily involved in monthly Saturday morning training schools at the circuit.
“The problem is that, having agreed to a sponsored second half Grand Prix for our junior riders taking place throughout the season, we couldn’t possibly fit in 14 junior matches as well.”
That sponsor – Middlesbrough-based Ecco Finishing Supplies – will also back the Cubs as they bid to topple 2016 Champions Northside on a mixture of 500cc and, for the younger riders, 125cc machinery.
One product of last year’s Cubs NJL side Carl Basford is already assured higher level competition this year after signing to race for National League Buxton Hitmen.
The 15-year old Eaglescliffe rider will join the Derbyshire side’s team boss Jason Pipe, who lives in Coulby Newham, in increasing the two clubs’ links when the 2017 campaign gets under way in April.
Articles published with thanks to Keith McGhie and The Gazette