The Ashfield-based speedway outfit have not raced at all this year after Covid-19 forced cancellation of the 2020 league season..
But their 2019 exertions are very much in the spotlight thanks to a Glasgow-based documentary maker whose movie “In The Red” has been featured at festivals across the world.
Patrick Rooney (24) followed Tigers across the country throughout their 2019 season, covering every aspect of the sport – from the fan who has his own track in his back garden, to the dramatic on-track brawl that made headlines across the speedway world, and the highs of the club making the league play-offs for the fifth consecutive season.
Patrick’s film also featured the massive overhaul the club has gone through at the hands of the Facenna family, owners of Allied Vehicles – which is based just a stone’s throw from the club’s home at Ashfield Stadium.
Now Patrick is celebrating the documentary’s success – after it was selected to feature at six international events so far: Wales International Film Festival, Toronto Motorcycle Film Festival, Los Angeles Lift-Off Film Festival, Close:Up Edinburgh Docufest, Sweden Film Awards and Rome Independent Prisma Awards. It has been shortlisted for awards at two of them.
Patrick – who runs Dear Friend Films – said: “Since the film was released on YouTube, the reaction has been really phenomenal.
“I never imagined people would watch it in their thousands like they have over the past few months in lockdown, so I’m really pleased it has succeeded in gaining attention.
“It’s an amazing feeling to have it selected for six film festivals internationally. To make a film that people seem to enjoy and react so positively to all around the world is really one of the ultimate goals you can have as a filmmaker – it’s something that I’ll never forget and am very humbled by.
“Speedway is a very unique sport in the sense that you can go to film a meeting with the knowledge that you are guaranteed to capture some truly daring performances from the riders on track, which makes for a very exciting and satisfying filming experience.
“One of the main reasons I’m so excited and pleased about the director’s cut being selected for these various film festivals is that it will boost people’s knowledge and awareness of speedway, which was why I really wanted to make the film in the first place.
“I’m also really happy to have Allied Vehicles represented all the way throughout the film, giving them even more international recognition as the amazing sponsors behind the film.”
Patrick also hopes it will give the area of the city which hosts the speedway a boost.
He added: “Possilpark is heavily featured in a film that is being shown internationally at various film festivals, which we hope helps to show the area in a better light”
Despite a blank 2020 Tigers have confirmed that their full line-up for this year will return in 2021 – including former British Champion and Team GB star Craig Cook.