SAVE OUR BEES: Devastated Bees fan releases fundraising book to help get speedway team back on track - The Coventry Observer

11th Aug, 2022

SAVE OUR BEES: Devastated Bees fan releases fundraising book to help get speedway team back on track

A DIE hard Coventry Bees fan is set to release a fundraising book to raise funds for ongoing support to help get the Bees back on track.

Tony Watson has been watching speedway since the late 1940s, and when news broke that the Coventry Bees were axed from the SGB Premiership he had no team to support.

The Alcester resident has reacted to the club’s absence from this year’s league to publish a book which documents Bees’ 2016 Elite League campaign at Brandon.

Starring the likes of Chris Harris, Krzysztof Kasprzak and Danny King, the book reflects on last year’s campaign by including reports and pictures from each of Bees’ fixtures.

As a bonus, all proceeds made from book sales will be sent to the Save Coventry Speedway fund – which supports various riders left jobless following the club’s axe.

Speaking to The Observer, Tony said: “I wrote up the contents as the season progressed, just writing a report after each match – at the time I had no thoughts of it becoming a book.

“The idea came into my mind as the season progressed and uncertainly crept in regarding the clubs future, which everyone is now sadly aware of.

“Creating a presentable book and publishing it seemed a good way to help put money into a ‘Save Coventry Speedway fund’ – and that is what I’m working towards.

“I have managed to get two sponsors to help towards my costs and at the same time had pictures supplied by Bees photographer Jeff Davies.

“I intend to put all proceeds from the book sales into the speedway fund.

“If the goal is achieved in reopening the Speedway team in Coventry it will all be so very worthwhile and again bring a lot of enjoyment to a lot of people who just love the sport of speedway racing.

“It’s second to none.”

Tony’s memories of speedway date back decades.

He most remembers the days of Arthur Payne, Alan Hunt, and Danny Forsberg – one of the first Swedish riders to race in the UK.

With speedway riders nowadays often racing in three leagues in three different European countries each week, Forsberg arguably set the trend for foreign riders to compete on British shale.

Tony said: “”My first visit to Brandon was in 1952, those were the days when the Bees were in Division Two while the Brummies were in League One.

“My visits to Brandon and watching the Bees has been on and off throughout the many seasons.

“I took my children to watch the racing too.

“Memories are far too many. More recently I’ve watched the Bees on a continuous basis since 2004 – one memory that stands out is trying to keep my children warm throughout the ‘scratch races’ before the firework display.”

Email tony.watson20@btinternet.com for further information about the book and to purchase your copy.

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