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  1. falcace

    Norden Stadium

    Maybe. But it was the biggest meeting at Hyde Road in years and would otherwise probably have been postponed. It certainly was the wettest I'd ever seen it. A sodden track - no matter where it is - turns things into a bit of a lottery and never suits the racers. Funnily enough, I just sold a picture from that meeting on ebay...cracking pic of Mort, Les Collins and Andy Grahame (see attached). It shows how sludgy it was! Put it this way, 12 days later on a perfect track Morton was dynamite beating Kenny Carter from the back and breaking the track record on his way to winning the Northern Riders. Phil Collins wouldn't have got a sniff. In short... Belle Vue 1983 was an act of God Norden 1983 was an act of Egon
  2. falcace

    Norden Stadium

    Hmmm. I think you are comparing apples and pears there.... You are omitting to mention that the Hyde Road Track for the 83 Overseas was an absolute quagmire. Had it not been a World Championship meeting, I doubt very much that it would have gone ahead. It doesn't have the same infamy as the 1984 British Final - it wasn't covered on ITV - but the track was very dodgy to say the least. That's why Mort struggled and so too did other track specialists PC and Shawn Moran. Billy Sanders went out in his last race to win the event, but ended up coming off on his own with his ass in the sludge by the fence. And as much as I liked Phil Collins, he would not have beaten such a classy field in normal circumstances. He was a freak winner in freak conditions. ps. I was there too...Norden, Amsterdam, Belle Vue
  3. falcace

    Norden Stadium

    Seems like half the forum was there. Me too! Also on a coach from Amsterdam. I seem to recall an organised trip to a cheese maker too! I don't question Muller's standing as a world class rider. He was for many years. But it was more the way he won it. Thought it then and it still plays out now on the video, he is absolutely miles faster than anyone else on the day. The rest look like they are on 350ccs in comparison. Muller was good and probably a few years past his peak in 83. In normal circumstances, he would have still been a handful for everyone on home turf, as he was at the 81 WTC at Olching. But there's no way he was that much better than the world's best without there being a serious mechanical advantage at play.
  4. First saw him ride at Swindon at some meaningless pairs event in 89. He was really poor and I thought this guy will never make it. I was ever-so-slightly wrong about that. One of the sport's true greats. Ultra professional and came across as a really classy guy too. I wish him and his family a happy and healthy retirement.
  5. falcace

    Kelly Moran

    Absolutely, with Dennis Sigalos also potentially in the mix. Gundersen was no2 to Penhall at Cradley and Nielsen had a year's more BL experience than Penhall, but Penhall was still a lot quicker to the very top. Like you say, he had the lot. He was also super professional too. He could have easily operated at the top for several more years, had he wanted to. His loss was terrible for speedway. But looking at it coldly and in retrospect, it was exactly the right thing to do for him. He'd won the last title at Wembley and defended it on home turf...he was never going to top that....and certainly not at places like Norden, Bradford, Amsterdam or Vojens.
  6. falcace

    10 favourite Australian riders

    True. I should do that. Always enjoy it. Do I get a pint now too?
  7. falcace

    10 favourite Australian riders

    Ps. Don't think he gets a mention. But I really enjoyed Rye House second stringer Trevor O'brien. Bit wild, but always had a go and gave absolutely 100% effort.
  8. falcace

    10 favourite Australian riders

    It's a pick em. I lean towards Crumpy purely on what I saw with my own two eyes on visits to Northern tracks. I know they clashed at the 83 Aussie Final, but that doesn't explain them being kept apart at every World Pairs in 78, 79, 80, 81 and 82. Guys like John Titman, Phil Herne and Gary Guglielmi were preferred. Yet, I don't think there would many that would dispute that Sanders and Crump were clearly the top two Aussies at that time. Seems odd. On paper at least, a Crump/Sanders pairing would have nicked a rostrum place or two and may even have won it in 83. Clearly, there's more to it than meets the eye.
  9. falcace

    10 favourite Australian riders

    Two questions... What's the general consensus on who was the better rider Phil Crump or Billy Sanders? And, what was the beef between them? The were clearly the top two Aussies for a long time, but were only paired once for the World Pairs?
  10. falcace

    BSI lose GPs

    Almost guarantee? Sounds suspiciously like internet tittle tattle, unless of course you do have the balance sheet for Cardiff at your disposal. No, though not. None of us, of course, do. So, let's seek some facts we do know: 1. BSI Speedway make a chunky profit. Over £4m at the last annual accounts: https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/company/03369723/filing-history 2. The Cardiff GP has been running for 20 years...I think we are a little beyond it being a brand awareness marketing exercise now. See point 1 again...you think BSI would do it if it were not the dollar? 3. The Welsh Government invest £3.9m in major events in Cardiff, but are a little shy when it comes to the specifics of the speedway, but we know their previous grant was £850k to host the event in Cardiff: https://gov.wales/sites/default/files/publications/2019-10/ATISN 13379 - internal review .pdf Of course, without the black and white balance sheet for Cardiff, it's completely your prerogative to dismiss all of the above. But if you still think it a myth that Cardiff makes serious dough, then you do so knowing BSI are highly profitable business, running a showcase event for 20 years bolstered by significant state support. Think again.
  11. falcace

    BSI lose GPs

    The new rights holders would be off their heads to jettison Cardiff. It's a proven money maker with a loyal base, the event template is long embedded and with the safety net of (rumoured) seven figure support from the Welsh Government, it's a classic no brainer. Broadly, I think BSI have done a good job with the GPs. With venues like Warsaw, Cardiff, Stockholm, Copenhagen and the like, they have moved the World Championships on significantly from the fading embers of the old one-off finals and the early GP series at Coventry, Pocking and the like. Live World Championship speedway on live television is now taken for granted as are some of the plush stadia it takes place in. 25 years ago, the world championship was in a very different place, despite what some fans and their rose-tinted monkey masks would say. But, I agree that there has been some stagnation in recent years and some freshening up could be a good thing. A more global series with new venues and new markets would be a welcome development. Good luck to One Sport, I sincerely hope they make a great breakthrough. Biased I may be, but a quality SGP stands fair comparison with any major motorsport world championship and is - I believe- a great product. My fear is that they will discover why BSI had difficulty in establishing any long-term sustainability in new markets and regressed to the reliable core markets of Polish, Swedish and British audiences. Put it this way, I wouldn't invest any of my own money into SGP's potential international growth.
  12. falcace

    FIM OCEANIA Solo Championship

    I sort of understand their frustration with the success of the SEC. But I would be very, very surprised if an effort to replicate it succeeded in the southern hemisphere. Without wishing to tread into another rather delicate subject....the concept and identity of Europe and European is so much stronger and, of course, more marketable. Hence the relative success of the SEC...and indeed other major European sports events. Oceania? I lived for a year in Oz and I don't think I've ever heard of anyone describe themselves as "Oceanic". The little mermaid perhaps? The football version has failed...why would a speedway one succeed?
  13. falcace

    Speedway's future IMO

    In short, speedway is saying to Dave and his family down the road that it cannot cater for them because it has to accommodate the wishes of some Danish bloke you've never heard of, so he can also ride in a Polish town you've never heard of either. Bonkers
  14. falcace

    Speedway's future IMO

    I do hope we are not drifting into the cheap "snowflake generation" argument here are we? I'll give my own experience as an example... I was first taken to the sport aged 7 to Belle Vue's Hyde Road and was hooked..we then went every Saturday. Not a school night, no problem. Though I suspect it might have been a problem had it been a midweek track at that young age....less so 2-4 years later. Then, we certainly had the odd midweek trip to follow the Aces to Sheffield and Birmingham. I am now a father of six year old twins, they will be 7 by the time of the next speedway season, so the right age (I think) to have a grasp of what's going on and potentially engage with it. Bedtime at ours is 7-7:30, later at the weekend. So a midweek track is out for now. Additionally, even when they are a little older and could cope with a later midweek night, we - unlike my parent's boomer generation - are much more squeezed for time...and disposable income beyond the mortgage and bills. Like many in the 30s-40s generation, both us parents work and after the kids get back from after school club and we rush to make dinner, there's little time left for anything before bed. In contrast, as a child, I had the luxury of a stay-at-home mum who could get us kids home at a decent time, have dinner ready early for the whole family and much more time for any possible midweek outing. Society has changed. Now, this isn't all about me, speedway can draw from older and younger groups. But I do think that appealing to my (current) demographic is absolutely key for speedway now and in the future. We only really have time- and money - for weekend outings and if speedway can't cater for us, it is going to miss out on thousands of families like mine.
  15. This is an absurd line of argument from Castagna too. My simple question is: "If that's the case then what new and wider audiences were attracted by the 25pts for the winner system in the early 2000s?" Show us the evidence, show us the market research.

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