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gustix

The first Pole to race in Britain

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Recall Henryk Zyto riding in Britain (1960) for Coventry and Pawel Walosek (1961) for Leicester.

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10 hours ago, norbold said:

Also Marian Kaiser for Leicester in 1959 and Stefan Kwoczala for Leicester in 1960.

I have memories of Marian Kaiser winning an international meeting at Oldenburg, Germany, in 1956. The two English starters were Tommy Sweetman and George Bason. Tommy finished among the top scorers but George was handicapped throughout the meeting by a wrist injury, sustained earlier in the day at the compulsory practice.

Edited by gustix

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5 hours ago, gustix said:

In 1959, briefly for New Cross - Mike Polukard and Florian Kapala.

With all due respect, that was a little different.  New Cross simply fielded a "representative" side in a handful of non-official fixtures. If you count their appearances for the Rangers as "official" representation of a team, then Peter Craven was a New Cross rider...

Steve

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5 hours ago, gustix said:

In 1959, briefly for New Cross - Mike Polukard and Florian Kapala.

 

11 minutes ago, chunky said:

With all due respect, that was a little different.  New Cross simply fielded a "representative" side in a handful of non-official fixtures. If you count their appearances for the Rangers as "official" representation of a team, then Peter Craven was a New Cross rider...

Steve

Here's a flashback to New Cross in 1959: Mike Polukard and Florian Kapala in the Rangers' colours. And many thanks indeed for the update chunky.

New Cross 1959 Mik Polukard and Florian Kapala.jpg

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1 hour ago, gustix said:

 

Here's a flashback to New Cross in 1959: Mike Polukard and Florian Kapala in the Rangers' colours. And many thanks indeed for the update chunky.

New Cross 1959 Mik Polukard and Florian Kapala.jpg

Is this an 'enhanced' photo?Even their faces are in New Cross colours,although I thought the Rangers colour was a bit different to this.This looks more like Coventry yellow!!!!

Edited by iris123

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Apart from Max Rech in the 1952 and 1953 seasons, mainly with St Austell, this is the first instance of other Polish riders in a team match. April 15, 1957, challenge, Wimbledon 73 Poland 34. The Poles were Adolf Slabon and Edward Kupczynski:

Heat 1) Briggs, Brine, Slabon, Kupczynski (Fell)

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According to the available sources, MAX RECH, Polish pilot serving in Royal Air Force during World War II was the first ever Pole to ride speedway on British tracks.

Max (Maximilian) Rech was born in Poznań in 1920. In the early months of World War II, with a pilot's license, he entered France and then traveled to England, where he joined the Polish Air Force fighting under the command of the RAF (Royal Air Force ). He was flying a Wellington bomber. On 15 August 1943 his plane with crews flew from Ingham Airport in England with the mission of demolishing the area of Borkum Island, part of the North Frisian Islands archipelago. Four minutes before the landing, the engine of the aircraft took fire after the attack of a German hunter. Twenty minutes later, at 23:50, the Wellington HE768 from the Polish squadron 300 crashed into the North Sea. Two crew members, Maximilian Rech and Czeslaw Poddany, survived the disaster and were drifting in the North Sea for eighteen days in a salvage boat . They were eventually "rescued", and actually taken captive by the German Kriegsmarine. Max Rech was sent to the IVB prisoners camp at Mükhlberg on the Laba river and later to another camp Luft VI Heydekrug in Lithuania, and later to Luft IV Gross Tychow in West Pomerania.

The first mention of a competitor bearing the name Max Rech, then 26 years old, and referred to as "the former Polish airman serving during the Second World War in the Royal Air Force (RAF), dates back to 1950. He had a short spell with Fleetwood Flyers on the Lancashire coast. In that same year, Max Rech was one of the riders of the Exeter club in Cornwall . He never participated however in any of the team official meetings

The next mention is that Max Rech moved to St Austell's "Cornish Gulls" club in the National League Division 3 and debuted in its colours on August 22, 1950, earning 5 +1 points in two races.

He stayed with them through 1951 and into 1952 (when the name of Division 3 was changed to the Southern League). On 15 July 1952, Rech crashed at St.Austell, sustaining 3 broken ribs, a broken right arm, and a fractured collar bone. There is no mention of him ever riding again. After retirement from speedway he settled in the area of Newton Abbot. For many years Max worked as a bus driver for the Western National Omnibus Company in Plymouth. He passed away in 2004

MAX RECH known racing records:

1950 St.Austell  9 matches, 20 points
1951 St.Austell 21 matches, 94 points
1952 St.Austell 16 matches, 74 points
TOTAL 46 matches, 188 points

According to plymouthdevils.proboards.com, after his retirement, he moved to the Plymouth area where he sadly passed away in 2004. He was well thought of by Speedway followers in the South West, particularly Cornwall.

I am grateful to Mr Brian Collins who provided me with most of above information.

If anyone reading these words know anything else about Max Rech I will be very grateful for any information

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On 18.12.2017 at 12:09 PM, steve roberts said:

Recall Henryk Zyto riding in Britain (1960) for Coventry and Pawel Walosek (1961) for Leicester.

There will be a feature on Henryk Zyto's 1960 season with Coventry in the spring 2018 issue of the "Classic Speedway" magazine available from Tony McDonalds's Retro Speedway

 

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A ver good and interesting piece PolskiZuzel.Much better than those titbits on the speedway museum site,which remind me of those little filler bits that used to be in the Speedway Star.

Just one tiny correction.The Exeter club isn't/wasn't in Cornwall,but Devon  

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It seems that now Poland is the top country for League Racing with the greatest support-is that right??

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9 hours ago, BOBBATH said:

It seems that now Poland is the top country for League Racing with the greatest support-is that right??

Interesting interview with Zenon Plech (Backtrack 2012) who stated "Even with crowds of 10,000 for league matches, it doesn't cover all the money they are paying out to the riders. And if sponsors pull out..."

Whether that still applies now I'll leave those familiar with knowledge of the present climate to comment.

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