Ivan Blacka brings us details and pictures of a quite remarkable speedway museum in Florida. The 'Garage Mahal II' is a privately
owned collection of memorabilia but is open to visitors by appointment.
Birmingham Brummies recently opened a Hall of Fame within their well-appointed restaurant complex. Eight Brummies legends are the initial inductees
with further additions to be made in the months and years ahead.
Find out what you can expect to find in the latest issue of the ever-popular Backtrack magazine from Retro-Speedway. Their interview with
Denzil Kent is a stand-out highlight this time.
We're delighted to report that Jim Henry's appeal for information last week prompted a major collector to contact him. As a result
Jim has received what he describes as a 'massive pile of information' that has helped answer a large number of outstanding queries on the
"In answer to Ian Harwood's question about
Costa Mesa Practice 1970--yes, this was the session filmed by Bruce Brown for 'On Any Sunday'. In the accompanying photo of
Ivan Mauger practicing a start, Brown and his camera are visible on the right, just outside the safety fence. He also filmed at least one meeting at Costa Mesa
(probably the following night, 30 October), and one Sunday afternoon meeting at San Gabriel Valley Speedway (the original 'Irwindale'). Unfortunately,
none of the speedway footage was used in the movie. "
"That had the annual Derby Fair at the Showgrounds and they
destroyed the track. Going to cost them about $30.000 to get it back to racing condition. Got to feel for them. I hope they come through and repair the track in time for
the next meeting. Speedway would not be the same in Calif. without Costa Mesa. Thumbs up for them."
"At the Speedway Museum at Paradise Wildlife Park
one of the displays is a replica of the Pits area in a Local Derby West Ham vs Hackney, and hanging up are Bengt`s Leathers and Hackney racing colours."
"Very enjoyable and informative for me. I was never a speedway fan -
never had the money to go and didn't know anyone who did go, but we could hear the roars on race evenings from where we lived - and for us, The Chads were a Liverpool
fixture just like Liverpool and Everton (we didn't go to the football either being a bit far out on the City/Roby border). We did make our own speedway and raced around
doing 'broadsides' and calling ourselves 'Chads' and such. The big day came when another team, from somewhere around Old Swan, I think, came along with all the real
gear - miners boots with a steel plate on the left one, scarves, helmets, goggles, push bikes rigged up as speedway bikes with wide home-made handle bars, etc. They had a
crowd of supporters and even 'girls' with them. We'd never seen such excitement and such glamour! We weren't able to give them any sort of competition but they didn't
complain and put on a great show for us. However, after it was over, we took the track markers away and that was that. Great times. "
"This was my uncle Norrie. As children we were really excited when
he came visiting because he seemed a glamorous person who was great fun for us to spend time with. He used to post notes under our doors written in red ink. They would
say things like, 'All your secrets are known - beware! Signed in his own blood - the Red Raider!' I remained really close to him up until his death in 1999." SPAN>
Willie is a lapsed Edinburgh Monarchs fan, who used to enjoy watching them at their former Powderhall home.
Jim Henry from the Speedway Researcher is looking for missing details of meetings staged in 1959. He's supplied a PDF of
the information he seeks. If you can help plug the gaps then email him at firstname.lastname@example.org
Friends of Speedway (a non-profit making organisation who are proud to sponsor the British Youth Championship � formerly the Under 15�s) are pleased to announce
the 42nd edition of their magazine the Voice which is packed full of interest and enjoyment. This issue is again 32 pages � a real bumper issue that will keep
your interest for hours!
In this issue David Telfer gives his views on many aspects of speedway including him contacting the Daily Express over the lack of speedway coverage
plus his ratings on Sky Sports matches; Roy Delaney gives the facts on Eric Chitty and BMX cycle speedway; John Chaplin gives the low down on the 1950�s
speedway and asks �where are we going?�; Charles Mckay writes two very intense articles on our favourite sport; Annette Maybach gives her thoughts on it too;
plus John Hyam and Tony Webb from Australia and the Editor gives a review of the new book about Col Stewart�s racing days available soon in the UK and much more!
Available from Friends of Speedway, 117 Church Lane, Chessington, Surrey KT9 2DP. Please send your cheque for �10 made out to the above for four issues of the Voice
(or �2.50 for this issue) to Stuart Towner at the above address or ring 0208-397 6599 for more information.
"Was this the session where Bruce Brown filmed footage of Barry Briggs
for inclusion in the film On Any Sunday? Altough the section eventually edited out of the finished film was subsequently lost there is an outtake included
in the "revisited" film Motocross, Malcolm and More which was released in the 1990s and is included in the On Any Sunday DVD boxed set. The leathers worn by
Briggo feature the same bear on the front and the riding style is very similar in this photo to that in the flim."
"Nice article. As good as Ivan Mauger was the Calif. boys gave The
World a really tough time when they had there series at Costa Mesa. Can you imagine the Calif. boys riding at Hull or Exeter they would get slaughtered by The World.
It just shows how tricky them little tracks are to ride."
"More to the point, when is the SGP going to go to tracks OUTSIDE of Europe & the UK? Ok,
Sydney held the Aussie SGP in 2002 but that was a one off on an artificial track. They don't come down under, they don't go to the Americas.....it's about time they did IMO."
"The length of the track is roughly the same size as the old
Sydney Showground Speedway (Speedway Royale) which sadly closed in 1996, There was an Australia vs USA match (unofficial) test there in 1999 but generally the only speedway
that takes place there these days is demonstration runs by vintage cars during the Sydney Royal Easter Show."
"I enjoyed reading Brian Buck's comments on Liverpool and the
Provincial League in general. Was there ever such a fascinating competition as the PL? At the end of its first season (1961) 40 per cent of its tracks (four out of ten)
were forced to withdraw for one reason or another, yet it quickly found five new venues for 1961. Throughout its existence, turnover was considerable, but there were
always new tracks to take the place of the ones that faltered. As Brian Buck recalls, the top three at the end of 1960 were the teams which had recruited riders with
plenty of National League experience.
One amazing statistic reported by the speedway press at the time was that champions Rayleigh (who won the league from Poole on race points) attracted a smaller average
crowd than rock-bottom Bradford, who only managed to win two league contests.
The circumstances that led to the birth of the Provincial League are covered in some depth
in my new book, SPEEDWAY The Classic Era, which is due to be published as a hardback by a publisher new to speedway, Halsgrove, this Autumn. The book
examines a number of the themes and the influences that shaped speedway in the first 40 years of its existence. The themes include the brief but bitter contest for
the soul of the sport between the motorcycle establishment and the commercial promoters, the struggle for recognition faced by aspiring riders, especially in the north
of England, during the mid-1950s downturn, and the battle between the declining National League and the booming Provincial League, which led to the PL running 'black' in
1964 and a subsequent probe into the way the sport was run, carried out by the top lawyer who prosecuted Nazi war criminals following World War Two."
Christian Weber has uncovered details of the German Golden Helmet that was staged from 1933-1939. The meetings saw sidecars and solos
competing in the same races and the prize for the first meeting was donated by the newly elected Chancellor.
Thanks to Brian Longman for these new pictures from Wolverhampton's Monmore Green stadium. Brian took the pictures when Hackney Hawks
visited the Dudley Heathens earlier this season.
Robert Rogers recently enjoyed watching the 'Blast from the Past' riders at Lakeside. He recommends checking out their website at
VintageSpeedway.co.uk. The picture above shows Keith Gardner at Lakeside, sporting the
famous white jersey and CH racejacket associated with the late Ivor Brown.
Chris Sands is a Bradford supporter hoping to hook up with other fans in the area to set up a new supporters club to arrange social gatherings and
trips to meetings. He appeals that if you're in the even the slightest bit interested to drop him an email at email@example.com
"My memories of Jackie are from the 60's, at Coventry. He
always had time for the fans. My enduring memory is when he broke a couple of ribs riding away from home, (I forget where) and he turned up at Brandon on the Saturday with
his wife's roll-on pulled up over his chest. It must have hurt like hell, but it shows the man's attitude to not let his team mates or the fans down."
"Lovely to read about Tiger Tom, I worked with him all too briefly
summer 76 at Imado Watches in Lichfield. They sponsored him and he delivered goods and picked up watches from airport etc I was 16 a speedway fan and in awe loved him
to bits. He was always very pleasant to me and I only recently discovered he had died so young. Speedway Star were kind enough to make enquiries and let me know via
Bert Harkins what had happened. Truly saddened. Take care everyone and enjoy our wonderful sport."
"Some of my earliest memories are of going to Rowley Park before it closed
(when I was 4). The plaque in these photo's isn't there ATM. Sadly some low life decided they wanted it more than where it should be :("
"Was a regular at Paisley for the two seasons it existed, I was 12
years old. Tom Davie was my favourite & I was saddened to hear he had passed away after a car crash sometime in the early 80's. I've got some of these pictures buried away
somewhere, they used to sell these pics at the merch stand."
"I used to ride for Long Eaton Bees cycle speedway team from 80-82, we
used to ride in the English league mainly in the midlands & yorkshire area. We had 3 or 4 real good riders who could hold their own, but we lacked a few more committed
riders and we used to get hammered most weeks. I remember we went on tour to Edinburgh as our captain George Syme was from there. I have actually raced on redbraes track!
We raced against Broomhall, Meadowbank and Annfield and won all 3 matches, which was great to win for a change. Can remember the bumps, bangs and cuts like it was yesterday!
We didn't wear safety helmets either back then. Still got the programmes. Used to write the match reports into the LE advertiser which like the cycle speedway and the
speedway stadium have all now sadly gone. Great memories though. I'm now 49."