SIX-time world champion Tony Rickardsson as well as former British world title holders Mark Loram and Gary Havelock will pay homage to Neil Middleditch at his testimonial later this month.

Rickardsson, the popular Swede who won the hearts of so many Poole fans during his three-and-a-half season spell with the club, retired from bike racing in 2006 and has in recent times been more involved in car racing.

But the draw of Middlo's testimonial was too great for Rickardsson and he has chosen to return to Wimborne Road to enjoy all the fun of the meeting on March 25.

"We have had some very special talent at Poole over the years but undoubtedly Tony is the most successful individual rider to have ridden for us," said co-promoter Danny Ford.

"He was a superb attraction in his riding days and brought the club tremendous credibility.

"My dad (Matt Ford) always talks about the likes of Malcolm Simmons as a household name in his younger times, for me the name was Tony Rickardsson so I am proud to be able to meet up with Tony again.

"More importantly though, I think it shows the high esteem in which Middlo is regarded that a busy man like Tony is prepared to take time out of his schedule to come and support his big night.

"Along with Havvy and Mark Loram it is going to be a galaxy of world stars watching on with keen interest."

Loram, a Pirate in 1999 and 2000, won his world crown in that latter season, some eight years after Havelock had ended a 12-year British drought.

Havelock is set to take on Pirates team manager duties alongside Middleditch for the upcoming 2020 season. He rode alongside Rickardsson in 2001 and Loram the previous two years, after having made his club debut in 1998.

A total of 14 riders are set to take to the shale for the testimonial meeting.

A team of Bjarne Pedersen, Nicolai Klindt, Brady Kurtz, Josh Grajczonek, Nico Covatti, Adam Ellis and Stefan Nielsen will take on a septet of Chris Holder, Scott Nicholls, Chris Harris, Danny King, Hans Andersen, Edward Kennett and Nick Morris.