Home Contact Us Stadia Pix Articles All About You Riders to Remember
DVDs Books Pictures Archive Dream Teams Programme Generator
DVD Review: 70s - A to Z
Your Feedback
Why is it in decline?
Plus Points
Dream Team: Garry Robinson
The Golden Hammer - 1996
Your Feedback
Raking Over Old Coals
The Golden Hammer - 1995
Plus Points
Your Feedback
Ode to Brough Park
The Golden Hammer - 1994
Which Craven?
Plus Points
Your Feedback
Ivan Miller
The Golden Hammer - 1993
Your Feedback
Generator - Prem Pairs
The Golden Hammer - 1992
As The Crow Flies
The Golden Hammer - 1991
Generator - Danish League
The Golden Hammer - 1990
Your Feedback
Oxford's Minor Miracle
The Golden Hammer - 1989
The Golden Hammer - 1986
The Golden Hammer - 1987
The Golden Hammer - 1988
The Golden Hammer - 1983
The Golden Hammer - 1984
The Golden Hammer - 1985
Plus Points
Your Feedback
The Golden Hammer - 1980
The Golden Hammer - 1981
The Golden Hammer - 1982
Plus Points
Your Feedback
The Golden Hammer - 1977
The Golden Hammer - 1978
The Golden Hammer - 1979
Plus Points
Your Feedback
The Speedway Bike
Your Feedback
45 Years a Racer
Your Feedback
DVD: Sheffield Memories
Your Feedback
Ronnie's Newcastle Nightmare
Plus Points
Book Review: Where Eagles Dared
The Cheetahs Are Back!
Your Feedback
King's Lynn - Part Four
Track Pix: Redcar
Your Feedback
DVD Review: Hans Nielsen
Track Pix: Sheffield
Your Feedback
Artem Laguta
Track Pix: Birmingham
Your Feedback
King's Lynn - Part Three
KENT - Central Park
Your Feedback
Book Review: Yearbook 2020
Track Pix: Peterborough
Your Feedback
Ian Hoskins Tribute
Ian Hoskins Tribute
Your Feedback
Speedway's Black Hole
Track Pix: Mildenhall
Plus Points
Your Feedback
Kirky Lane Demolition
Cinder Kings Exhibition
Plus Points
Your Feedback
Aussies at Ipswich - 1
Plus Points
Your Feedback
Steve Langton Strikes Gold
Plus Points
Your Feedback
Book Review: Split Waterman
Your Feedback
King's Lynn - Part 2
Your Feedback
Irish Eyes Were Smiling
Plus Points
Your Feedback
King's Lynn - Part 1
Plus Points
Your Feedback
Speedway in Germany 1933
Dream Team : Kevin Huggett
Plus Points
Your Feedback
The Bill Allen Mystery
Your Feedback
The Ipswich Witches
The Danger of Winning
Your Feedback
Australia 70/71
Canterbury Noise Trials
Your Feedback

Keep it Simple
by Chris Seaward....14/10/2005

Hardcore or Fair-Weather?

Dave Green's article entitled 'here to help' was more refreshing than a freezing cold beverage on a sweltering day, quite simply fantastic.

It was quirky and innovative but more importantly highlighted the necessity for speedway virgins, upon witnessing their first meeting, to feel a strong enough sense of enjoyment to return to the terraces.

With Sky Sports beaming the sport into millions of homes there has never been a better opportunity to obtain a new wave of support.

Look at the world's most popular sports and they are all share a common theme, simplicity. Football, rugby, tennis and to a lesser extent golf can all be grasped relatively quickly without a great deal of difficulty. Speedway could and should be the same, four riders from two teams racing four laps around an oval circuit.

I have always thought Speedway, more so than other sports, has definite categories that spectators can be assigned too.

Firstly you have the hardcore fan, the individual who will turn up week after week regardless of the teams performance stand in exactly the same spot and immaculately fill in their programme.

Secondly the fair weather supporter who revels in success but despises failure. When on track performances are good this illusive character will confidently stroll into the stadium and usually has the intention of jumping on a victorious bandwagon.

Thirdly the family, out for an evening of entertainment, maybe they visit the track a few times a year but every time expect to witness some 'good, close friendly racing'

The first timers stick out like a sore thumb, fumbling through their programme visibly confused by the scorecard and further perplexed by the odd looking numbers neighbouring the riders name. This is where the character presented by Dave would be worth his weight in gold, strolling round the stadium offering assistance and explanation to the bemused first time visitor. Also a single page amongst the programme explaining how to fill in the race results and a brief overview of basic rules would help eradicate first timer confusion. The excellent British Grand Prix programme does just this in a non patronising informative style and covers race format, two minute allowance and helmet colours.

What would a first timer make of a guest rider? An individual who rides for an opposition team in the same league being introduced. In a nation where sporting parallels are continually drawn to football this one really is ridiculous and farcical . It is quite simply absurd and the concept of a squad system must be introduced sooner rather than later to stop the embarrassing guest procedure.

So why is Speedway so successful and well attended in Poland? Easy, they keep it simple. All matches are run on a Sunday afternoon, the teams are allowed one foreign rider amongst their side, have two riders under the age of 21 at reserve and most importantly consistently stick by these rules.

At the meeting I attended the riders were introduced individually in order of the team line up and allowed three practice laps. Both teams opposite numbered riders took to the track at the same time, fully kitted up, and evaluated the racing surface. This provided the fans with a proper opportunity to assess the opposition riders and was more importantly a subtle and interesting introduction into the match. It also allowed the opposing team to gauge what set up they needed in order to be competitive from the start of the meeting.

British speedway can't keep changing its rules in hope of a sudden surge through the turnstiles. Legislation must stay the same in order to achieve familiarity and avoid ambiguity amongst the fans. The essential rules of football have hardly altered in a hundred years, and British speedway must aim for the same sort of continuity.


This article was first published on 14th October 2005


  • Bryan Tungate:

    "Both Dave Green & Chris Seaward have talked sense in these articles. It would be a good thing if every Promoter of Speedway read these items before this year's meeting. Make it simple, not double points for doing nothing more than a rider would normally do. Guest Riders are the worst thing ever in Speedway. In a bygone season White City won the League on the back of a permanent guest for Dag Lovaas who had said he had no intention of riding here that year. A guest on each side should cancel out but it doesnt happen."

    [ Use Mobile Version ]


    Comment on this Article | Contact Us | Go Back to Main Menu

  •    Please leave your comments on this article or on the site as a whole