Dream Team: Paul Waites
Kings Lynn and Mildenhall fan dating from the early 70s. Bought up on great racing huge crowds and wonderful atmospheres. Lucky enough not to miss a match at Mildenhall for the first two seasons before work got in the way. The 7 riders I have selected are not necessarily the best riders I have ever seen but the riders I have enjoyed watching the most.
Bravery technique and style - he had everything and was a superstar at Kings Lynn. The first rider cut out of the Speedway Star and stuck on the bedroom wall.
Much the same as Terry Betts in that he was a superb leader and a huge influence on the team. From memory I think he scored over half of Mildenhall's points in one away match in the first season, may have been a 6 ride maximum using him as rider replacement etc. Enourmous sideburns added to the glamour factor....
In Mildenhall's first ever National League team against Scunthorpe and top scored that day - while he didnt maintain the blistering form of the first meeting he still provided some magical moments on his JAP - guessing here but I think his first season average was near to 8 - he was getting on a bit then so a good return in a struggling side.
Lynn rider with a bad boy image but a top top rider, aggressive in his approach and no prisoners taken. Did hear stories about him and John Tiger Louis getting into a scrap in the Lynn pits though I cant confirm it happenend. Basically any Lynn rider getting one over on Louis would immediately achieve legendary status in the 70s.
When Kevin broke into the Mildenhall team he was on a mission - final lap overtakes on the 4th bend up against the boards - pure excitement. I also remember him getting excluded and walking to the car park and sitting in his car refusing to move. It all added to the excitement and was great entertainment.
Stories of him using the name Kid Bodie because his parents didn't want him to ride intrigued me. I believe Kid Bodie was a western character of the time but either way it seemed a cool thing to do. By the time I watched him racing he was Howard Cole but the thought of him riding incognito was every lads dream. BTW my Alias would have been Bruce Banner from the incredible Hulk.
NumerousSubmit Your Own Dream Team
Going to cheat here and name a few - Chris Julian - rumours were he would fly in by gyrocopter when he signed for Mildenhall; Mick Bates for losing his rag and kicking the referee's box at Mildenhall when excluded (ironic now he's a ref); Ian Tiddler Turner for being so short and dynamic - he often looked like he was laying down on his machine.
This article was first published on 27th April 2014
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