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Plans for motor sport at Odsal put on backburner
Plans to bring speedway and stock car racing back to Odsal with a six-figure investment are on hold as talks over the ownership of Bradford Bulls continue.
Steve Rees, of Startrax, and Tony Mole, president of British Speedway, had been in talks with Bradford restaurant boss Omar Khan about the possibity of both sports making a long-awaited return to the Provident Stadium while he was at the helm of the Super League club.
Discussions stalled when Mr Khan agreed to sell the club to local businessmen Michael Moore and Ryan Whitcut in September, with Andrew Calvert and Ian Watt later joining as directors.
But Mr Rees said the motorsport bodies would now give the Bulls space to establish its own financial structure and understood the club’s “obvious priority” was rugby league while a dispute over its ownership is resolved.
He said: “I do not plan any further communication until well into next year so they can formulate their own business plan.”
As the Telegraph & Argus reported on Tuesday, Mr Moore, Mr Watt and Mr Calvert are back running the club after walking out on Christmas Eve over Mr Khan’s refusal to transfer his majority shareholding to them.
Rugby Football League chief operating officer Ralph Rimmer chaired a summit meeting at Odsal between Mr Khan and the potential new owners on Monday, with the talks described as “constructive”.
The meeting encouraged hopes that a resolution could finally be found after it was revealed that Mr Watt, Mr Calvert and Mr Moore were still involved with the running of the club on a day-to-day basis.
Plans to bring speedway back to Odsal after a 16-year absence were first revealed last April, while the return of stock car racing was mooted in June.
Bradford Council later granted planning permission for both sports to return, but in August Mr Mole revealed he had hit a set-back in his plans to reintroduce speedway because of a legal technicality.
Mr Mole said there was a clause in the stadium’s lease, currently held by the RFL, which did not permit the sport.
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