DEC 00] COVENTRY BLAZE NEWS
Blaze Burning Brightly And Happy In Coventry
ice hockey team is hoping to close in on a British record this
weekend to continue a superb start to life in the city.
ice hockey team regularly played in front of crowds of just 500 when
they were based in Solihull.
since their summer move to the Skydome the fan base has just kept on
growing, and the team is now closing in on yet another attendance
topping 2,000 spectators, the Blaze set a record among British
National League clubs in England, and if they get to the point where
800 standing tickets are also sold they will get past the mark set
by the Fife Flyers.
director Grant Charman said crowds having been constantly growing as
people in the city latch on to the furious spectacle.
the Blaze have reacted to the mounting support by going on a rampant
winning streak. They currently top the table in four competitions.
absolutely love it. Because of the acoustics the sound and the
noise funnel down onto the ice.
ritual goal celebration dance performed by the crowd is becoming a
frequent sight, and Charman says it is a measure of how many new
fans are coming along and enjoying themselves.
the first goal goes in there’s a lot of people who don’t do
the dance because they don’t know it, but as time goes on you
can see they are enjoying themselves because they take part
said confidence is one of the reasons why the team is doing so well,
along with the magic worked on the 18-man squad by respected coach
being streaks ahead of the opposition, there is only a small chance
of winning promotion to the Superleague. Ice hockey is based on a
franchise system and the Coventry Skydome doesn’t yet boast the
facilities needed to get in among the big boys.
said there is also a gulf in salaries, with most of the Superleague
players coming from abroad.
the BNL there is a limit, and there is also a competition restricted
to players trained in Britain.
squad is gearing up for the next challenge: a grudge match with Hull
Thunder in the short Christmas competition the NTL Cup.
game is at 6pm on Sunday.
were the last team to go away from the Skydome with a victory, so
it’s payback time. We went to Hull and played there recently and
won 4-3. It’s going to be a very close game.”