Jump to content
British Speedway Forum

Vince

Members
  • Content count

    2,875
  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won

    29

Everything posted by Vince

  1. I would say the exact opposite as 15 other riders also get 10 goes a season! In the one-off finals a single bad gate or a breakdown could see off some of the potential winners, that isn't the case now.
  2. Vince

    Keith Flint RIP

    All around motorcycle fan always seemed like a decent guy. Will be missed by quite a few teams and riders I think
  3. I think Both Barry and Martin have been around Speedway long enough to know how it works. I'd agree that they would probably end up powerless if they tried to change anything that might upset the old guard though.
  4. I would imagine anybody with an interest in keeping the sport alive.
  5. Vince

    Just One Race (or maybe two!)

    I was 11, Briggo was local to us and I'd met him a few times so as far as I was concerned Persson was the devil himself and a no hoper who knocked off the vice messiah (Mauger was the only true Messiah in my eyes) and robbed him of a certain title! In retrospect I will allow that it was a racing incident although Persson was mostly at fault and given that he finished 2nd in the meeting (if my memory is to be relied upon) was a long way from a no hoper and actually a very good but hard rider. Wembley was such a poor track to decide a World Championship that such passes were necessary I think. A Wembley final was a fantastic occasion though and we used to have two coaches go from our small village. Nowadays the village has doubled in size but you couldn't fill a mini bus with Speedway fans. Briggo had every chance of winning another title that night, he could usually pull it out at the big meetings but we'll never know.
  6. Vince

    Just One Race (or maybe two!)

    For me I think it would have been Eastbourne about 1977 and strangely it wasn't much of a race but the runaway winner was Gordon Kennett. The reason I remember it especially is it was the first time I'd ever seen a rider go four laps without shutting the throttle. I'd just got a Speedway bike and so was probably paying more attention than before and it really made me doubt my ability for the first time. Of course in later years I had no doubts about my ability, I became well aware I didn't have much of it! Other races I particularly remember are one with Christer Lofqvist passing Soren Sjosten (I think) third bend of the last lap after being a long way behind at Poole in the early 70's. Something Lofqvist was able to do often enough that it was widely assumed Mr Knott would put his hand in his pocket when it happened. Also Briggos crash at the Wembley World final when he lost his finger because the bike ended up a few feet from us. Hated Bernt Persson for years after but he turned out to be a really nice bloke.
  7. I can imagine the 2030 posts now "I remember when we had real men riding full size bikes and proper racing in 2019" Seriously I don't think reducing engine size will make much difference to the racing, if anything it would become more processional as they wouldn't be using throttle control to find grip. It would increase costs with smaller engines revving their nuts off.
  8. The track surface has changed a great deal the past few years at Kings Lynn, it used to be so grippy that plenty of decent riders really struggled to get turned. But those riders who could deal with it had lots of passing lines. It's a lot looser now and I think that is why the racing isn't as good. Whether the change is due to the track man, the shale available and/or the cost I have no idea but it's most definitely different.
  9. In MX and Flat track at least the transponders are all fitted on the top of the left fork leg between the yokes and everybody has to fit them in the same place. There are two wires about a foot apart in the ground and the transponder is recorded by them so instead of the front wheel it will be the top of the fork leg or for spectating purposes the handlebars are close enough. Can't see them being used for jump starts as that is another system and probably an expensive one.
  10. I just can't see how guest riders will ever stop new people coming through the door, unless of course they are told how terrible it is by an existing fan. It may well be a problem that costs the sport some existing fans but it's hard to see a way it can be resolved. Smaller teams will mean more riders sat on the sidelines waiting to race however they aren't going to wait forever they will retire from Speedway and race something else weekends. In fact the use of guest riders could be treated as a positive by explaining they are necessary because of how dangerous the sport is and how often teams are hit by injury. To me the racing is as good (and bad) as ever but the show has gone backwards if anything. They have tried to sanitise a sport that should be celebrating it's dirty, dangerous and aggressive side. People want to be entertained every minute of the evening now so something needs to be happening between races and while grading. Doesn't have to cost anything much, a local kids Trials club putting on some demos, the local cycle speedway club having some races on the back straight, local bands and so on. For those tracks that can use the centre green a cycle Speedway race between each heat is a natural fit I've always thought. I'm sure there are lots of other things people could suggest. But most importantly make the Speedway entertaining, everybody pretends to be horrified by crashes and punch ups but the sales of the crashes and cock ups videos are always much higher than any other and a punch up always sees a good crowd not only the following week but next time that team visits too. The sport is having all it's natural spectator appeal stifled.
  11. Vince

    Rev Limiters

    Tiger Cubs had a big end that would disintegrate within a few seconds as a secondary rev limiter though
  12. I think it should be one of the major promotional points along with the danger. Each to their own but in 50 ish years of going to Speedway I've never bothered with filling in a programme, then again I like individual meeting more than most team racing so I'm aware that I'm very much in the minority. If you want to keep the fans coming back following free entry I would suggest some good racing, a couple of spectacular crashes and a punch up between a couple of riders would be most effective. I'm with Rob Godfrey (for the first and very likely only time) on this one. I believe that although there were some great riders and racing in the past overall the quality of racing is higher now.
  13. Fair play for trying to come up with new ideas and transponders can only be a good thing in races. However of all motor sports Speedway is about being in front not necessarily about being fast so I don't think the qualifying is a good thing. If experience in other motorcycle sports is anything to go by there will be some surprises as to who the fastest one lap guys are in comparison to those who have been winning races.
  14. Vince

    Rev Limiters

    Why are you so convinced that a modern day two valve would be so much cheaper to maintain? The two extra valves, spring and seats aren't going to have a major impact on the cost and I just can't see the logic of your argument for 2v engines.
  15. Vince

    Rev Limiters

    I think it's a bit of a myth that the old engines were more reliable for starters. Even good Grass track riders would grind the valves and check the motors on a JAP every other meeting (some every meeting). I don't know about the Speedway boys but I remember the 2v Jawa was a big step up reliability wise. I used to strip my 2v more often than I did my sons 4v Jawa's although a lot of that was because I wasn't riding very often so had time to mess about. I have been told the most reliable engines between services were the 897 & especially the 898 4v Jawa's which I've been told would run all season at a good level with one rebuild. Even in the good old days riders like Briggs and Co would hire an engine from one of the top tuners for the big meetings for a fee plus a bonus if they did well and it could work out very expensive but worth it to the rider in terms of future income. The best riders always had the fastest engines and spent good money on having them tuned. Personally I think that getting back to long stroke engines with a rev limiter set to work at just below their normal ceiling would be a good start. Very simple to measure engine stroke and rev limiters so would be easy to police. Not sure it would reduce costs by a vast amount but would in my opinion give a bike that was safer to ride.
  16. Vince

    Rev Limiters

    All they would do is put two valve heads on very short stroke engines and with a bit of valve and porting work be very close to where we are now within days.
  17. A fair percentage of tracks just aren't available Friday night (still time off work to get there) Saturday or Sunday. I took amateur to mean they wouldn't be paid, certainly Mr Snackette seems to be making the argument they should be paying to ride.
  18. I think you should probably read what is in my posts rather than what you think I'm saying. I shall repeat without the completely unnecessary large bold lettering and keep it as simple as I can for you. I don't do not get paid to ride because I do not ride Speedway. As I have said repeatedly just like your son I travel all over England and pay to race (in my case flat track). In Flat Track there is very rarely any prize money, if there was at 57 I wouldn't get a sniff at it. What is good though is that I only race weekends so can take a decent job and work around my sport. My son did used to ride NL Speedway and as I have said elsewhere I financed him for 4 years and it took me the same amount of time afterwards to recover financially. We did all our own work on the bikes including my doing his engines so money wasn't going to tuners or on unnecessary go faster bits or bling. What hit hardest by a long way was the travelling costs and time away from work. My son riding Speedway cost far more than for the two of us to ride MX as we were doing previously or the two of us to do flat track as we do now. For most of that 4 years he was on NL base rate with Newport and the normal travelling allowance but it still cost a lot of money to ride for a team. I agree that Speedway in the UK is living beyond it's means at the moment. I do not agree that you can have team Speedway without paying the riders because nobody in their right mind would pay to race in Berwick on a Saturday, Newcastle on Monday and Somerset Friday when they could ride as an amateur at their local track on a weekend. There is also the small matter of finding work that allows you to meet that schedule then make re-scheduled rain offs at short notice. For far less money you have your choice of motorcycle sports that allow you to travel as far as you want to, race in conditions or on tracks that you like and never be forced to ride anywhere. That is what your son does and what I do, we chose when and where we compete. Now I don't know your personal experience of finding the finances to ride Speedway but even when I was a youngster I ran out of money before I ran out of even my small talent. I have proven that I have a grasp of the realities so instead of trying to belittle my opinion let us know exactly what experience and figures you have to back up your case. I still say that if you run Speedway as an amateur sport you will have exactly an extension of what you have now in amateur Speedway. That is riders competing mostly with their local clubs in various ability classes as individuals. If you have team racing it is generally those same riders split into groups and while fun for them it is nothing like league racing. In the main it won't matter because not many will pay to watch it and the tracks won't be able to meet the costs. The costs of league Speedway have to be reduced or the income increased but it can no way survive if it doesn't at least go some way to covering the riders expenses.
  19. THEY MAKE THAT CHOICE ONLY BECAUSE THEY CAN AFFORD TO AS THEY GET PAID FOR IT. IF THEY DON'T GET PAID TEAM SPEEDWAY WILL DIE BECAUSE IF THEY CHOOSE TO RIDE AS AMATUERS THE WILL DO SO LOCALLY AT WEEKENDS. TEAM RACING IS WHAT MAKES SPEEDWAY SPECIAL, BEING AVAILABLE TO RIDE ANY DAY ANYWHERE IS WHAT MAKES A SPEEDWAY RIDER SO BLOODY SPECIAL! DOES WRITING IN LARGE BOLD CAPITALS MAKE EITHER OF OUR POINTS MORE RELEVANT? I too travel the length and breadth of the country racing, however it is completely my decision when and where I ride just like it is your sons and I'm not riding several times some weeks. That is why we pay to race and in my case there is no prize money at all. I too do so because I love the sport I choose to participate in. However that is nothing to do with why Speedway riders need at least some payment as I explained in my last post. What the sport can afford is a different matter but almost nobody would be ale to afford to ride league Speedway unpaid.
  20. Like myself nobody tells your son when and where he can race. Nobody fines him if he doesn't fancy riding that day. Nobody will force him to ride in conditions he thinks are dangerous. Nobody expects him to travel the length and breadth of the country often at little notice in order to race in the middle of the working week. No other motorsport is a genuine team sport and therefore Speedway riders are a special case because there are expectations put on them that aren't put on other racers.
  21. Vince

    Rye House & Lydde

    What you saw at Stoke is no way comparable to what you get with the DTRA meetings from what I hear from those who rode. I think when other people run flat track meetings it takes them a few goes to adapt, it did at Rye House and could well do so at Stoke. I thought you meant another organisation for flat track but for amateur Speedway there are a few clubs running now and they seem to do OK for entries. Again I'm not convinced that another organising body is needed (you would have to battle for the right to call it Speedway for starters) although I'm sure that if there was track time available another club wouldn't hurt.
  22. I like the NL although I think it used to be a roughly 50/50 mix of clubs using it to develop riders for their other team and stand alone clubs where now there are more stand alone clubs and that changes things. Traditionally the stand alone clubs need to win at home to pull a crowd and have paid their riders more while the development clubs paid base rate but offered better opportunities. I have to say though that doesn't apply to all clubs and Buxton are a big loss to the league because they can no longer afford to be competitive. The standard of NL racing is pretty high I think and compares well with the level of the old second division riders when I was younger in the 70's, the comments I've seen on here about wobblers are generally nonsense. The racing is like all Speedway some good, some poor and the odd great race. The right old hands are absolutely necessary as the kids need somebody to learn from in their own team and to chase from the opposition. Not all old hands are good at this but many are. I suspect that is true at the highest level but a bit further down I think travel and time off work is a bigger expense.
  23. Sam Hurst, only rode NL for Newport and Weymouth (well a bit of PL for Newport but out of his depth). Reasonable amount of talent and a good set of balls but lacked the dedication to make it any further.
  24. Easily said but if you want a career in Speedway you'll generally be starting out at 16 by the latest. Try telling any company and /or college that you want an apprenticeship but you need to be able to take random days off to travel to tracks at the other end of the country. I'll pop in this week on Tuesday until midday as have I have track A that night Wednesday in all day then I'm off all day Thursday to go to track B. Then next week I'm in except for Monday and Friday as I have track C&D. Come September you'll only be able to give a few hours notice trying to make up for rain off's and if things are going well getting some guest rides. Or you might need 3 weeks off for your broken collarbone or worse 8 weeks of with a leg. But it's Ok next year will be much the same! Speedway doesn't owe anybody a living but who is going to race league Speedway as an amateur when they can race at weekends only and might as well if they can't get near covering their costs? The only reason for tramping around the country riding for a team is the chance you'll make it to a good enough level to make some sort of living during the season then you can bust a gut doing overtime at labouring or whatever to make enough money to equip yourself for the next season. That is the reality for far more riders than make a decent year round living.
  25. If you go for amateur Speedway or even paying less than it costs to ride you will say goodbye to league Speedway. NL riders may do it when they are trying to get in a higher league but it doesn't take long to run out of money. I keep seeing that riders should have full time jobs and race Speedway like in the 'good old days'. Great idea but in todays job market just how many jobs can fit in with riders travelling on various days and taking spells out injured? In the past Speedway was a big enough sport that many employers would take on riders and make allowances for their sport because it gave them some involvement, these days most employers don't know what Speedway is. I know my lad went through a variety of jobs trying to find one that fitted and I had to completely change my career to cart him around for NL Speedway. We didn't pay anybody to work on his bikes as I did the motors but the travelling and time off work hit hard, took me as long to recover financially after he gave up as he was riding for. Also don't underestimate what riders could earn in the past, only last year Les Collins was telling me how when he first raced Speedway he could earn as much or more as a second half rider as he could as an apprentice. I used to work for Jimmy Squibb and he made a very nice living out of Speedway while being the equivalent of a third heat leader today I would guess.
×

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue. Privacy Policy