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New Zealand v Poland 1975 - First Test
By Tracy Holmes

'Ronnie, Nitro-Circus rain pain and sleeping rough.'

When this series was announced, it shot excitement sky high! At last we would get to see 1973 World Champion Jerzy Szczakiel in action. So cruelly denied the opportunity to visit with the Mauger/Briggs series the season before, surely, he would make this one.

Ahhh no! They arrived in Australia mid-January. The line-up being; Edward Jancarz, Zenon Plech, Andrzej Tkocz, Andrzej Jurczynski, Piotr Bruzda, Piotr Pyszny with reserve Zygfryd Kostka.

Former National Champion and World Finalist Henryk Zyto would be mechanic and standby reserve. The 'manager' was Bernard Kowalski who had 'toured' with Plech and Jancarz the year before. It was an impressive debut as they met a Liverpool Select in Sydney, winning 55-53. George Hunter, Garry Middleton, Howard Cole, Bob Humphreys, Dennis Alderton, Greg Kentwell and Bob Valentine getting more than a run for their money.

Less than a week before the first Test in Kiwiland, the unimaginable happened. Ronnie Moore was near fatally injured in Oz. As we all know, he somehow survived but the 'Pele' of World Speedway would never ride competitively again. Also missing was Mike Fullerton, recovering from a broken wrist with hand injuries.

The 1st Test at Western Springs on Saturday, January 25 saw a comfortable win for the home team but a spirited performance from the visitors. Gary Peterson was completing a wonderful 'comeback' and his 18-point maximum was magic. Made even more so by his partner Graeme Stapleton, making sure they went unbeaten in all their heats.

The big drama came after the event when it was discovered that nitro had been added to the fuel source. And this explained much of the troubles experienced on the night. Poland protested and this was upheld. The meeting results declared void. Good heavens, what a start and what a to-do!

 

1st Test.

Heat 1. Mauger, Plech, Pyszny, Andrews.
Heat 2. Tkocz, Adlington, Bruzda. Briggs ef
Heat 3. Peterson, Stapleton, Jancarz, Jurczynski.
Heat 4. Mauger, Tkocz, Bruzda. Andrews ef
Heat 5. Jancarz, Briggs, Adlington, Jurczynski.
Heat 6. Peterson, Stapleton, Plech, Pyszny.
Heat 7. Jancarz, Mauger, Jurczynski, Goodall. Andrews ns
Heat 8. Plech, Adlington, Pyszny. Briggs ef
Heat 9. Peterson, Stapleton, Tkocz, Bruzda.
Heat 10. Mauger, Plech, Pyszny, Goodall. Andrews ns
Heat 11. Bruzda, Tkocz. Adlington ef. Briggs ef
Heat 12. Peterson, Stapleton, Jancarz, Jurczynski.
Heat 13. Mauger, Goodall, Bruzda, Tkocz. Andrews ns
Heat 14. Briggs, Jancarz, Jurczynski, Adlington.
Heat 15. Peterson, Stapleton, Plech, Pyszny.
Heat 16. Mauger, Jancarz, Jurczynski, Goodall. Andrews ns
Heat 17. Briggs, Plech, Pyszny. Darwent ef. Adlington ns
Heat 18. Peterson, Stapleton, Bruzda, Tkocz.

New Zealand 62
Gary Peterson. 3 3 3 3 3 3 (18)
Ivan Mauger. 3 3 2 3 3 3 (17)
Graeme Stapleton. 2 2 2 2 2 2 (12)
Barry Briggs. ef 2 ef ef 3 3 (8)
Robin Adlington. 2 1 2 ef 0 - (4)
Res John Goodall. - - 0 0 2 0 (2)
Bob Andrews. 0 ef - - - - (0)
Res Terry Darwent - - - - - 0 (0)
Ronnie Moore inj dnr

Poland 45.
Edward Jancarz. 1 3 3 1 2 2 (12)
Zenon Plech. 2 1 3 2 1 2 (11)
Andrzej Tkocz. 3 2 1 2 0 0 (8)
Piotr Bruzda. 1 1 0 3 1 1 (7)
Piotr Pyszny. 1 0 1 1 0 1 (4)
Andrzej Jurczynski 0 0 1 0 1 1 (3)
Res Zygfryd Kostka dnr

 

This article was first published on 12th March 2023

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