A PAIR of friends have called for the broken pieces of the Coventry Bees speedway team to be picked up so the club can race in next season’s SBG Premiership.
Steve Pinks and Dean Ismay have been watching speedway at Coventry Stadium for more than 100 years between team – cheering on legendary riders including Ole Olsen, Tommy Knudsen and more recently Chris Harris.
But the pair were left numb when it was announced last month that the Coventry Bees would not be competing in this year’s Premiership due to an ongoing off-track dispute.
Steve, who has been attending speedway meetings since 1961, told The Observer the sport means everything to him.
He added: “It’s my life. That’s all there is to it.
“I’ve been to watch Coventry Bees so many times it’s a miracle they didn’t take me with them when closing the club, I’m part of the fixtures and fittings!
“World champions have raced around Coventry Stadium. The late Peter Craven, he was fantastic.
“I remember he was once starting a race 20 yards behind everyone else and he passed everybody. Those were the days of handicap racing.
“The top stars would start 20 yards behind the tapes, the better riders 10 yards and the novices’ at the tapes.”
Dean meanwhile attended his first Bees meeting when aged just seven – and he’s been hooked on the sport eversince.
The 53-year-old said: “When I first started going to speedway there were riders like Nigel Boocock, Ole Olsen and Tommy Knudsen, they were world stars.
“I followed them all over the world. I’ve been to Denmark, Germany, World Finals – I even saw Ole Olsen win at Wembley.
“The sport has declined but it’s still a huge attraction. All the riders that raced for Coventry were top riders.
“We’ve got to pick up the pieces and get this club back together.”
Visit www.coventryobserver.co.uk to find out more about our Save Our Bees campaign.