Kent Kings announce 2018 fixtures
Kent Kings announce 2018 fixtures

The countdown to the 2018 National League [NL] season got real this week with the announcement of the fixtures for the forthcoming campaign.

For the Kent SLYDE Kings it’s another packed programme as the Central Park-based Speedway side go for glory on four fronts: the main NL, the National Trophy [NT], the National Knock-out Cup [NKOC] and back on the calendar for 2018, the National Fours.

The Fours has a new venue, Leicester and is being staged in June after the popular event was not contested last term. The East Midlands venue who will host NL newcomers the Coventry Bees this coming campaign, will also be staging the National League Riders Championship [NLRC] for a third year running on a date to be confirmed in September.

There’s a whole of track action to go before we get to that stage though, with the season to start at Central Park Stadium in Sittingbourne over the Easter weekend with two challenge encounters (both of which will have second legs to decide the winners) against local rivals Eastbourne and the 2015 and ’16 NL champions, Birmingham.

The SLYDE Kings visit the Second City in a busy opening to the season, two days after Easter Monday for that Easter Cup second leg and then travel out on the Friday to the south-west for the first NT Group match down in Devon taking on another set of city slickers in the form of the Plymouth Devils.

May has an equally busy start with an NT trip to the current holders Mildenhall, before the NL campaign gets underway hosting Buxton Hitmen on the May Day Bank Holiday. Isle of Wight Warriors, who feature three former Kings in Danno Verge and the two Bens, Morley and Hopwood are the visitors for the second Bank Holiday in May.

June begins with attention shifting to the NKOC with the away leg against Stoke opening the home calendar for the month in a busy weekend which sees a first trip of the year at Leicester to take on new boys Coventry.

Like June, there are five NL matches on the roster for July and by August the chase for the Play Offs (to be staged in September/October) will be looking to be settled with three testing but sure to be vital away days in the north west taking on the reigning champions Belle Vue Colts (the Manchester-based side), Stoke and Buxton.

Birmingham are the visitors on August Bank Holiday Monday with September opening with the annual staging of the Kent Laurels for the WJ Cearns Trophy – a particularly significant individual event in the year when the sport marks the 90th anniversary of the work of pioneers like WJ Cearns in introducing the sport to the UK.



All home fixtures at Central Park Stadium start at 6.30pm unless otherwise stated.


Fri 30 Eastbourne (time TBC) Easter Chase HOME
Sat 31 Eastbourne Easter Chase Away

Mon 02 Birmingham (3.30pm) Easter Cup HOME
Wed 04 Birmingham Easter Cup Away
Fri 06 Plymouth National Trophy Away
Mon 30 Kent All Time Greats Challenge HOME

Sun 06 Mildenhall National Trophy Away
Mon 07 Buxton (3,30pm) National League HOME
Sat 12 Eastbourne National Trophy Away
Mon 14 Plymouth National Trophy HOME
Mon 21 Mildenhall National Trophy HOME
Thu 24 Isle of Wight National Trophy Away
Mon 28 Isle of Wight (3.30pm) National Trophy HOME

Sat 02 Stoke NKOC Away
Sun 03 Coventry (at Leicester) National League Away
Mon 04 Stoke NKOC HOME
Mon 11 Eastbourne National Trophy HOME
Sat 16 Eastbourne National League Away
Mon 18 Plymouth National League HOME
Sun 24 National League Fours (at Leicester)
Mon 25 Coventry National League HOME
Fri 29 Plymouth National League Away

Sun 01 Mildenhall National League Away
Mon 02 Stoke National League HOME
Thu 05 Isle of Wight National League Away
Mon 09 Isle of Wight National League HOME
Wed 11 Birmingham National League Away
Mon 16 Reserved NKOC HOME
Mon 23 Reserved . HOME
Mon 30 Eastbourne National League HOME

Mon 06 Mildenhall National League HOME
Mon 13 Belle Vue National League HOME
Wed 15 Belle Vue National League Away
Sat 18 Stoke National League Away
Sun 26 Buxton National League Away
Mon 27 Birmingham (3.30pm) National League HOME

TBC National League Riders Championship (at Leicester)

Changes to fixtures:
August 20 HOME
Kent Laurels