WEYMOUTH Wildcats began their pre-season preparations in earnest with an internal battle on their adopted home track at Eastbourne.

All six Wildcats were present at the Sussex venue, which will host all Weymouth’s home fixtures this season.

Two other riders were invited to the event, one of whom being Andrew Palmer, who took the spoils by earning the most points.

The leading Wildcat was captain Jordan Bull, who placed third despite fitting a new engine after discovering a fault during pre-season practice in Plymouth.

Speaking to Echosport after the meeting, Wildcats’ co-promoter Martin Peters felt the run-out had achieved its aim of handing his youthful squad some all-important track time.

He said: “It would have been nice to see a Wildcat win the trophy but I’ve been saying it’s not about winning, it’s about getting them on track – some of them haven’t ridden for six months.

“People like Bailey Fellows have just moved up to the 500cc and he hasn’t ridden since February. It was about getting them used to the Eastbourne track. It’s something that we decided we would put on. Obviously we have got the six riders and we really wanted to get them out before they actually went out and raced on the track.”

He added: “I know Andrew has ridden there a few times. He rode very well and was a deserved winner. Jordan was doing a bit of practice in Plymouth and had a new engine but overall he did okay.

“I know a couple of them were disappointed with how they rode. They were almost beating themselves up about it. I said to them ‘don’t worry about it, it’s just about getting on track’.

“The track is a little bit like an egg, so it can spit you out, but they’ve had that little taster now.”

Peters feels the event gives him a selection headache for Wildcats’ first Southern Development League fixture of the season at home to the Isle of Wight on Saturday, May 5.

He said: “We’ve got that problem where we’ve got six riders and we can only have four, but the lads who don’t race will race the next one.

“We’ve told them that we’re not choosing on who scores the most points. It’s just going to be ‘you, you, you and you’ and the others will sit out. They will get roughly the same amount of rides.”