Exciting times as King’s Lynn Stars confirm link-up with the UEA and Force India

The right fiormula? From left, Dr Paul Hammerton, Dr Richard Purvis, Robin Brundle and Stars rider N

The right fiormula? From left, Dr Paul Hammerton, Dr Richard Purvis, Robin Brundle and Stars rider Niels-Kristian Iversen. Picture: King's Lynn Stars - Credit: Archant

King's Lynn Stars have teamed up with the UEA and Force India in the appliance of mathematic science ahead of the new speedway season.

While mathematics has been used in many branches of motorsport to eke out the extra bit of speed, speedway has yet to delve into the world of equations.

The collaboration is between the Stars and the School of Mathematics at the university, who will look at how mathematical algorithms can be developed to guide strategic decisions, both before and during a race meeting.

The study will be spearheaded by two UEA academics, Dr Paul Hammerton and Dr Richard Purvis, both lecturers in the School of Mathematics who have a keen interest in applying scientific research to sport.

Dr Hammerton said: 'The first phase of the project will be for a summer student to analyse results from the 2017 season, focusing on the probabilities of race outcomes based on rider ratings.'

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Dr Purvis added: 'By the end of the 2018 season, we may see mathematics playing more of a role in rider recruitment, team order and strategic substitutions.'

Force India F1 have shared some of their experience in maximising the benefits derived from analysing complex performance data. The initiative has come in part from the co-promoter Robin Brundle's link with Formula One – his brother Martin is a former racer and current TV commentator.

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'From my experience in top-flight motorsport this programme will take some time to develop,' he said. 'Each stage of the development will deliver an improved management tool that will inform our thinking around race strategy. In addition I expect it to assist in our future rider selection and retention programmes.'

Fellow co-promoter Dale Allitt said: 'Managing a speedway team is far more complex than you would at first imagine. A manager's experience is gained over a number of years and like most sports at this level, you can never have too much information.'

The Stars riders have already worked with Team GB coaches Chris Neville and Paul Suggitt on health and physical assessments and educated them into how they can improve their fitness regimes.

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