England v Australasia 1972 - 2nd Division Test Series - Part 2
The second Test was at Rayleigh on August 19. Roger Wright arrived battered and bruised from a spill the night before. He was moved to reserve with fellow Cantabrian Terry Shearer taking his place. England selected three home stars, Brian Foote, Allan Emmett and Trevor Barnwell. Peter White said, "Both teams were determined to win and with hot-heads on both sides, fireworks were inevitable."
White continues in this report;
"Jack Millen and Graeme Smith came out for heat 3 against Brian Foote and Arthur Price and the fun and games started! On the last lap, Foote fell while racing in close company with Millen. Price crossed the line ahead of Smith and Millen but the referee dropped a bombshell and excluded Millen for unfair riding. The Australasian camp saw red, especially the volatile Millen who is rapidly becoming accustomed to such decisions from English referees ! [ Anyone who witnessed Jack Millen in full volcanic blast can visualize what was being reported !!! ]
Vehement protests fell on deaf ears and the result stood at 4-2 for England with Foote being awarded the third place point in lieu of Millen. Granted, Millen zoomed under Foote possibly a little harder than the Pom might have liked, but this was a speedway test match, not a Teddy bears picnic. In heat 10, Garry Flood came a cropper and slammed into the fence head first. He sustained severe concussion but would not leave the pit area for medical attention until the match was over. Although dazed and seeing spots before his eyes, this tenacious track tornado was prepared to take his last two rides if needed. The will to win was that intense.
With no-one giving an inch, the racing became fast and furious [ in the true Wally Loak style ] culminating in a heat 16 boil-over. Crump [ unbeaten with 15 points ] missed the trap against Foote. As he attempted to ride around, Foote moved up track and the Aussie fell. Crump banged against the safety fence and lay motionless. [ He was in a mess ! ] The race was stopped but the referee failed to exclude Foote. [ It was all four back but Crump was injured and unable to ride. ] Refusing medical aid and ignoring the track doctors instructions, both Crump and Flood left the track under their own steam and returned to their home at Crewe."
It was 5-1 for the Poms in the heat 16 re-run but the Australasians clinched the series win in the next two heats. Bob Young and Terry Shearer making it 3 all behind Malcolm Ballard in heat 17.
Then a 5-1 to Jack Millen and Graeme Smith. Peter White continues,
"There was no way the boys were going to lose this one. With their dander up and the tension tight around the circuit, Jack and Graeme showed just what spirit and guts can do as they proceeded to blast Allan Emmett and Arthur browning into the dust !"
Heat 1. Crump, Ballard, Flood, Davis.
Phil Crump 15. Bob Young 14. Jack Millen 12. Graeme Smith 9. Garry Flood 3. Terry Shearer 1. Roger Wright 1. Dave Mills 1. Jim Ryman injured. No start.
Malcolm Ballard 15. Arthur Price 13. Allan Emmett 9. Brian Foote 6. Arthur Browning 5. Gordon Kennett 4. John Davis 0. Trevor Barnwell 0.
This article was first published on 17th December 2018
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