December 11 2013 Latest news:
By Sam Park
Thursday, September 5, 2013
Senior ice hockey will return to Alexandra Palace after a three-year absence on Saturday.
The revamped Haringey Racers take on south London’s Streatham Redskins at home, before a return fixture at Streatham on Sunday.
There hasn’t been a competitive men’s team at the rink since the end of the 2009/10 season and the pre-season friendly will be the first chance for home fans to catch a glimpse of the new side.
Under the new ownership of former Haringey player David Richards, whose father and namesake played for the club in the 1950s, the team will begin competing in the country’s lowest tier, National Ice Hockey League South 2.
The Redskins compete in the league above – South One – and Richards believes it will offer a useful test.
He said: “It’s going to be a great learning curve and I’ll be excited to be back playing in the Palace. By the time we come round to play our first league game on the 14th [at home against Chelmsford] I think we’ll be more than ready.”
Head coach Simon Kears added: “I’ll be implementing some new things, slotting in some new guys and tinkering with lines.
“Streatham are a great team and it’s a bit of a London derby. I’ll be resting a few guys for Sunday’s match to make sure we are fully ready for the 14th.”
The Racers started their pre-season preparations at the weekend away at South One outfits Bracknell Hornets and fell to an 8-3 loss.
Man of the match Ricky Rutherford grabbed two of the Racers’ goals and Lee Hounslow notched the other.
Richards took many positives from the game. He added: “We outplayed them at times and missed three clear-cut chances.
“We can only really improve on what is already a very good platform. All of the feedback I got from impartial people who came to watch was very positive.”
Kears added: “Overall it was good. We managed to get what we wanted out of it, which was to test our fitness, find our strengths and weaknesses and highlight some areas to work on. It was always going to be tough as Bracknell are a well-drilled side with good experience of playing alongside each other.”
Face off for Saturday’s game at Alexandra Palace against Streatham is at 5.15pm and details of all fixtures can be seen at www.haringeyracers.co.uk.
Tickets can also be purchased on the site with a £1 discount on the standard price on the door, which is £7 for adults while those under the age of 12 are admitted free.
The revival of the Racers name goes back to the original 1936 side who played alongside the Greyhounds at the Harringay arena.
The Racers were two-time English National League champions in 1937-38 and 1948-1949 following a break due to the Second World War.
The club were also the first ever British National League winners in 1954-55 but disbanded when the arena was sold.
Various incarnations of the Racers and Greyhounds played out of Haringey’s Alexandra Palace between 1990 and 2010 – and now they’re back!