Dream Team : Derek Lloyd
I am 46 and have followed speedway since I was 13, my local team is Coventry but I also went to the old Blackbird Road on a Tuesday when the top teams came calling. At one time I would go anywhere to see this great sport but then I got married and that soon stopped, money for the kids not racing. My son likes to go sometimes but racing on a Friday can be awkward. I still collect Cov home/away programmes thanks to Bob Cooke who runs the supporters club.
"Siggy", what a talent - pure skill and a really nice guy. Came to Brandon with the Witches and smashed the track record in the second half, another rider came out and did a wheelie from the pit gate to the third bend, Siggy followed him out and did a whole lap on his back wheel - "genius". Never the same after his ankle injury but won the F1 powerboat world championship with Penhall I believe.
The most polite person you could ever meet, the only rider that could score zero and still be signing autographs for two hours after the meet. Soon went from zero to hero and was a more than capable heat leader and rode at number one for the Bees for a while. Rick had the best testimonial I have ever been to, everyone who was someone wanted to ride in it with a packed stadium on a glorious sunny day.
A true Brit who was proud of his country, a super talent who was destined to be a world champ. Away from the track Kenny was a nice guy who would talk to fans long after many riders had gone. Who could forget his British title with a broken leg - TRUE GRIT.
From a riding view he was a pure genius. I went to Wembley in 1981 and saw a master class and he inspired Cradley to heights they only dreamed about before he came to our shores. Another nice guy from over the Atlantic.
I think that's how you spell it! Cut his teeth on loan at Boston and then came back with a bang, rode at number one for a while and nearly won the Midland Riders one year. No messing guy who is still talked about for his no nonsense approach and letting his fists talk for him at times.
A young Swede from the seventies who had loads of potential and was a great force with Olsen. Was called up for national service and was never the same rider afterwards. A cheeky grin who the girls loved.
Pure talent on two wheels who was finished by injury. Claimed many top scalps while riding at reserve for Coventry including Hans Nielsen when Hans was number one at Oxford. Another rider who graced our sport but who has been long forgotten.
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This article was first published on 18th September 2008
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