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Plymouth Devils tracking Finnish rider Kalle Katajisto

By pstoneham  |  Posted: December 16, 2013

Kalle Katajisto
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PLYMOUTH Devils are tracking Kalle Katajisto, whose first appearance for the city speedway club last season ended in disaster.

Only minutes into his debut at Scunthorpe in August, Katajisto was involved in a collision with Czech team-mate Hynek Stichauer.

The resulting crash, in the first lap of the Finn's first race for the Devils, put Katajisto in hospital with a jaw broken in several places and a severe neck injury.

Stichauer was so distraught about the accident that he quit British speedway.

Now Devils team manager, Lee Trigger, has confirmed  Katajisto is also on his radar.

Trigger said the Finn had recovered from the injuries he sustained in his collision with Stichauer.

He said: "We're in advanced talks with Kalle about the possibility of him coming back next year.

"It's probable, should everything be agreed, that he would join the team as a reserve."

Trigger added: "I have watched Kalle for years and I think he would be a good addition to the club.

"It's difficult to believe he's only 22 because he's been around for a while, but in my view he's got bags of potential.

"He seems fit and well and the accident he had riding with us doesn't seemed to have deterred him.

"He's going to come back to the sport prepared, although nothing's done yet as regards a deal for us."

Devils' interest in Katajisto comes after they re-signed Dane Rasmus Jensen for next season.

Jensen is regarded as highly as another Dane who rode for the Devils last season, Mikkel Bech, who has since moved onto the Elite League with Lakeside.

Premier side Devils have high hopes of Jensen, who was brought to the St Boniface Arena-based side part-way through last season.

Jensen immediately became a regular points-scorer for Devils.

Trigger said he was looking forward to working again with Jensen.

He said: "Rasmus finished second in races consistently last season and scored good points for us.

"If we can get him to gate (get off the start line) a bit quicker, then he's going to win more races."

Jensen becomes the fifth Devil to ink a new deal.

If Katajisto does sign, Trigger will be left with one more reserve place to fill.

Cornish star and Great Britain international Ben Barker is returning to the St Boniface Arena.

He will be joined by Alex Davies and Kyle Newman, two members of Somerset's league and cup double winning side, while the fourth signing was talented Hungarian teenager Roland Benko.

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