Dream Team : Will Pottinger
I'm a life long Cradley Heathens supporter even though we no longer have a track. I have fond memories from the mid 90's and our 4 Team Tourament Final success at Peterborough in 1995 stands out as a highlight. My grandfather was actually a promoter at Cradley in the mid 90's. I still take in meetings at near-by Wolverhampton, Coventry & Birmingham but supporting any of them isn't an option! I'm only 21 years old so I never got to see the greats like Mauger, Olsen, Penhall & Gundersen so my dream team is made up of riders from recent years.
Greg is my favourite rider and was Cradley's number one and captain for many years so he is a natural choice to lead my team. I will always remember the feeling in Heats 13 & 15 of a meeting when Greg & Billy Hamill would come out for the Heathens. You could pretty much write a 5-1 in your programme before the race! Away from the track though Greg is a great person and throughly deserved his World Championship.
Mr consistency. It's a shame Leigh has never transformed his league form into a world title. He is in my team based on his excellent league form. Nearly every year he gets a 10+ average and he hasn't won 10 Austrailian titles for no reason.
Tony is one if not the best rider I have ever seen. I cannot really comment on the Rickardsson v Mauger debate as i never got to see Mauger. Tony brought a new image to speedway with his pit crews, motorhome, pit shirts/caps etc which are now used by nearly all top riders nowadays. Tony was very professional and was definitely one of the best there will ever be.
Mark Loram was such an exciting rider to watch. His gating wasn't the best but he made up for this with his style and ability to pass from the back. It was great to see him win a world title as I never thought he would do it.
Billy is another Cradley legend. It was a pleasure watching Billy develop into a top class rider. He won his world championship while riding for Cradley which was great. His partnership with Greg was brilliant and they would always come out in heats 13 & 15 and save the day. That's why Greg & Billy are at numbers one & five in my team.
Although he isn't and probably won't be a world champion he is still a very good rider. Scott has lots of natural ability and was a great captain for Coventry a couple of years ago. He's definitely one of my favourite Brits.
My memories of Bomber are pretty much summed up in one word... Cardiff! That win was out of this world. I thought we would never get a British winner at Cardiff but he proved my wrong. He has a great ability to pass from behind and is very similiar to Mark Loram. Another of my favourite Brits.
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This article was first published on 2nd April 2009
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