AN INTERNATIONAL speedway rider from Coventry was forced to miss his latest fixture after being stuck in Dover boarder control traffic for more than 14 hours.
Chris Harris, who races for the Coventry Bees, finally reached boarder control at Dover on Saturday evening after setting off from Brandon at 11pm following Coventry’s home Elite League fixture against Belle Vue.
However the 33-year-old was stranded hundreds of miles away from his German destination – forcing him and his two mechanics to immediately turn around and head back to Coventry once they reached the front of the queue.
Harris regularly travels over 4,000 miles each week by plane and van to race for both Coventry in the Elite League, Krakow in the Polish League and Holstebro in the Danish League – while also competing in the Speedway World Championships.
Despite his relentless schedule, Harris told The Observer he’d never seen anything like the traffic he was stuck in on Saturday and was relieved when he finally got home.
He said: “I had a meeting at Coventry on Friday and we left the stadium at 11pm, we hit the traffic at 3am and that was it then.
“We was heading to Germany as I had a meeting over there, but obviously by time we’d reached boarder control it was too late and the first race had already started.
“We turned around to come back home – which relatively speaking took no time at all.
“The whole situation was frustrating as I was looking forward to racing, it’s just one of those things really.”
Harris, known to his fans as Bomber, said it wasn’t until 1pm that he and his team received fresh drinking water.
He added: “There wasn’t an awful lot to do, three of us were in the van and we just had to talk to pass the time and watch the clock.
“I did feel sorry for the parents and their kids stuck in the traffic as we didn’t receive any fresh water until 1pm and there was no toilet facility too.
“As a speedway rider I’m used to travelling thousands of miles a week flying to and from Poland, Britain, Denmark and Sweden – but this was something else, I don’t recall having to wait this long for traffic ever.”