Incredibly it's been 32 years since Joe Screen made his first appearance for the Belle Vue Aces. Let's take a look back at Good Friday 1989 when the Aces took on the Bradford Dukes.
Friends of Speedway (a non-profit making organisation who are proud to part-sponsor the British Youth Speedway Championship) are pleased to announce the 80th edition of their magazine the Voice which is packed full of interest and enjoyment. This issue is a huge 28 pages, which will keep your interest for hours!
In this issue Charles McKay says 'Sorry, there is no money left' and his Customer Relations article. Philip Dalling speaks of the Austrian Champion Alfred Sitzwohl who had a 'milky diet'. Sue Towner on her Soapbox again attacking the re-development of Rye House, plus her Treasurer's Report. John Hyam on Wal Morton. Slider says, 'Speedway from Hero to Zero. Ron Jones delves into the products produced by The Stadium Press at Brandon Stadium. Antonio Lindback says good bye. Sidecar Speedway and Bibliophile's Corner. Plus more to keep you interested.
Available from Friends of Speedway; 117 Church Lane, Chessington, Surrey KT9 2DP. Please send your cheque for £12 made out to the above for four issues of the Voice to Stu Towner at the above address or ring 0208-397 6599/07860 135939 for more information.
"Great fun and I immediately remembered my young years. Also with dice and bonus points for a real value of riders I played parallel a fantasy world championship with all possible qualifying rounds. Here unfotunately I noticed a little bug: Lionel Van Praag couldn't ride both in heats 10 and 11. Overall a great idea!"
"I did not realise there was such animosity from Alan. I was priviliged to watch his team riding with Ole and he was superb at it and I for one did realise he was he was good enough and FAST enough to carry this off and as he says had the NUTS to do it, hats off to you Alan!"
Tony Webb tells us that speedway bikes are now officially pieces of art, particularly Graham Warren's 1947 machine which is currently on display in Melbourne's Gallery of Modern Art.
Toni Clifford [ email@example.com ] needs our help:
Toni's Grandfather was called Henry Barker and may have ridden speedway at New Cross and other venues. Searches so far have drawn a blank, does anyone remember a rider of that name? It's likely to have been in the late forties, or early fifties.
"I would like to add my condolences on the death of Peter Colvin. I first met Peter when we were both students at Strathclyde way back in the late 60's / early 70s. It was always a pleasure to talk to Peter and draw upon his knowledge of years gone by. I for one will miss him and he is a massive loss not only to his immediate family but also to the rest of the Speedway fraternity everywhere."
"Tracy does it again! What a really interesting comparison from different eras, and a rather good way of looking at how Ivan & Hans stacked up against each other, even though they never competed against each other at a World Final. More of this, please."
"Excellent article David, remembering as you do the mid sixties-the first BL season in 1965 for example, it makes me weep to see the current state of British speedway. Although I now live in Canada, I have thought of visiting England just to see the tracks that I didn't go to which were operating in 1968 when I left and still are at the same venue. These are Brough Park, Monmore Green and Kings Lynn. My mates have said to me don't come over just for that-best to remember the photos of how they were. BTW an excellent book re the depths of mid fifties speedway and how it made a major comeback try and get "Saving Speedway" by Philip Dalling an excellent book."
We were very sorry to hear that Peter Colvin passed away shortly before Christmas. Peter was a Glasgow based historian who contributed quite a number of articles to the site over the years. His Snapshots of Yesteryear series was particularly popular, where he drew inspiration from a photograph and shared some associated recollections.
He also enjoyed a moment in the spotlight when he triumphed over the Eggheads on the BBC quiz show. Peter is in the bottom of the picture shown.
As a tribute to Peter, here are some of his best Snapshots columns, starting with this one which featured the opening meeting at Berrington Lough, the narrow straights at Paisley and the first Glasgow Tigers team he watched.
Peter first watched speedway at White City in Glasgow, the spiritual home of the Tigers. In this article Peter commented on some pictures from the mid sixties.
Malc Wilson [ firstname.lastname@example.org ] is looking for some help:
"I am trying to fill in some gaps in my memory. My Dad had a friend in the forces named Sid Strellitz who had a motor bike shop on the Barking Road in Plaistow E13. We spent a weekend at his place in the 1950s. I also seem to remember that he was once a speedway rider which set me thinking that some of your more senior fellows may remember him - if, in fact he had been a speedway rider? Can any one remember him?"
"Tremendous book- I agree wholeheartedly with Jim Henry's comments. BTW -a tip of the hat to you Jim Henry, Philip mentioned to me that only you and I picked out Stan Bradbury in the Motherwell photo. I also agree with your comments re the the SAL- up the Monarchs!!"
"Again another good article by Dave Pickles. Riders will go where the money is and Polish Speedway want to be the best so more people will subscribe to watch it. I think it will be good for British, Swedish and other leagues in the long run as it will force them to produce and bring on their own riders. What is probably forgotten is that back in the early 70's British Speedway did more or less the same thing. When Britain could field a top class side a fair percentage of top British league riders were Swedish and for a season commuting riders were banned.
I think British Speedway needs to go back to pre 1968, one league, the current fifteen heat formula with the second half individual racing with juniors partaking. I would say do away with maximum team averages so no levelling up of team strengths and let teams pay what they can afford, this would do away with doubling up. Race days would need to be on whatever day suits the individual tracks.
The way we watch speedway has changed, you can now watch the top riders live at tracks you probably would never get a chance to visit, in the comfort of your own home at a fraction of the price of actually going to watch it live. The GP's, Polish and Swedish speedway have shown us that even during lockdown you still get excellent racing and British speedway needs to try and attract these sort of supporters to subscribe to watch British speedway. Lets hope 2021 sees the virus gone and we can get back to doing the things we love. "