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Vsm Issue 55

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Issue No.55 – Vol 14 No.3 – Autumn 2006




SEVENTY years on from his historic victory in the first-ever official World Final, Lionel Van Praag continues to intrigue and cause controversy among speedway aficionados all over the world.


Now the 1936 World Champion will no doubt provoke more lively debate following the production of a compelling, new documentary film, entitled The Flying Dutchman.

Narrated and produced by Aussie historian Tony Durant, who kindly passed a preview copy of it to VSM for viewing before it goes on general release later this year.


It’s the nearest anyone can expect by way of a definitive analysis of Van Praag, the rider and the person.


With the co-operation of Van Praag’s daughter, Cherie, and another interview with one of Lionel’s closest friends in Australia, Durant delivers a candid and compelling insight into the former Wembley star.


We learn more of the alleged ‘deal’ that Van Praag struck – and then apparently reneged upon – with England star Eric Langton just prior to their decisive 1936 World Final run-off.


We hear about Lionel’s life away from the track, including his fighting prowess that made his a feared man in his Sydney neighbourhood.


We get to know more about Van Praag’s resistance to his son Barry’s own quest for speedway stardom and how they never spoke after the crash that tragically ended Barry’s career and left him paralysed.


England’s first World Champion Tommy Price reveals how LVP once flattened him with a punch.


But in this well balanced documentary, we also get the full story behind Van Praag’s heroic war effort that earned him the George Medal for bravery.


Also in issue 55…



The latest in our popular Leg-Trailers series, John Chaplin looks back on the former World Champion who was killed just a year after his famous Wembley victory . . . and before he could capitalise upon his status and riches.



To coincide with the 60th anniversary of Glasgow Speedway, former Tigers promoter Ian Hoskins recalls Glasgow and Edinburgh teams and matches of the past.



Why the five times World Champion is still greatly revered by old supporters of Norwich Stars…and why the brilliant Swede is to be made a freeman of the city. Also…what Ove and fellow countryman Olle Nygren have been up to in the desert!



A tribute to the former Wembley, Wimbledon, Oxford and Rayleigh stalwart who is to finally retire from riding a speedway bike…at the age of 79!



Philip Dalling takes a personal dip back intro the early 60s, his childhood memories and his first Long Eaton favourite, ‘Slant’ Payling.



Latest news on the progress of the first Speedway Museum at Paradise Wildlife Park, including some rare gems that have been donated for display in the museum that is on schedule to open in April 2007. On the museum front, find out how you can boost the overall fund and stay warm this winter with one of the new Speedway Museum fleece’s.



Part two of our interview with the London who went to race in South Africa in the klate 40s, but returned to Britain to race again.





A subscription to VSM costs as little as £12 a year in the UK (4 issues), £15 in Europe or £18 Rest of World. To subscribe, click: http://www.retro-speedway.com

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