The BLRC 1976
Ole Olsen wanted this desperately but he was going to need something special. Peter Collins was not only the home favourite and defending Champion, he was now the Speedway Champion of the World!
And also in the line up was Malcolm Simmons, Phil Crump, Ivan Mauger, John Louis, Doug Wyer, Martin Ashby and Dave Jessup. Every one of these guys more than capable of taking the top spot.
So what was Ole's ace in the pack? The long awaited 4 valve Jawa. Mauger was also on board the newbie. Would it be any good?
It was a cold and wet night at Belle Vue on October 16. Olsen, Jessup, Collins and Ashby all won their openers. Heat 5 and what a showdoon! Olsen, Collins, Mauger and Dave Morton. From the outside and to the delight of the Belle Vue fans, Collins makes the gate from Morton while Olsen and Mauger have tangled. Mauger bites the dust and as Collins is powering clear down the back straight, the referee stops it!
First bend bunching, all 4 back. Collins fans scream for Olsen to be excluded. In the re-run, Mauger gated but Olsen was quickly by and too Collins who puts up a huge fight. But Olsen puts not a wheel wrong and takes the three points. From then on they matched eachother win for win. At half time, Olsen and John Louis were unbeaten. Collins and Ashby with 8. Heat 13 saw Olsen dispatch Louis while in Heat 16, Collins did the same to Ashby. Ole wrapped it up in Heat 17, outgating Ashby and reeling off another magic 4 laps for his second BLRC Title. Collins secured 2nd place in Heat 18, beating Louis, Jessup and Briggs, passing them all on the first bend. Another brilliant night that could only have been bettered had Heat 5 not been stopped.
Could Olsen have caught Collins? Maybees, maybees not though! One could only dream ...
Heat 1. Olsen, Jessup. Pusey ef. Boulger fall.
Ole Olsen Coventry 15. Peter Collins Belle Vue 14. John Louis Ipswich 13. Martin Ashby Swindon 12. Dave Jessup Reading 11. Phil Crump Newport 8. Chris Pusey Halifax 6. Res Ila Teromaa Leicester 6. BARRY BRIGGS Hull 6. Doug Wyer Sheffield 5. IVAN MAUGER Exeter 5. Gordon Kennett White City 5. Dave Morton Hackney 4. Res Mick Hines Wimbledon 3. Terry Betts Kings Lynn 2. Malcolm Simmons Poole 2. Jim McMillan Wolverhampton 1. John Boulger Cradley Heath 0.
This article was first published on 20th September 2020
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