Ashfield Giants

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Ashfield Giants were a motorcycle speedway team based at Saracen Park, Glasgow, Scotland between 1949 and 1952.[1] The track operated on an open licence in 1953.[2]

Brief history[edit]

The original Giants team were the rump of the Newcastle team of 1948. Tuesday nights 1949 to 1951 were "Giants Night" and arguably their most famous rider was Ken Le Breton, known as 'The White Ghost'. Ken (real name Francis) was the star man in his white painted leathers and led the Giants 1949 and 1950. Ken was the first of 3 Scottish based riders to compete in a Final of the World Championship.[3]

Ken was killed in a track crash in his native Australia in early 1951; this prompted massive scenes of public grief at the stadium.[3]

Co-promoters Johnnie Hoskins and Norrie Isbister presided over a colourful team with a rider in red leathers - Aussie Merv Harding, a rider in blue leathers - Aussie Keith Gurtner and a rider who rode in yellow and black - Scotsman Willie (the wasp) Wilson. Eric Liddell joined the fun with silver leathers. All this in a time when most riders wore the standard black leathers.

The Giants were never very successful and the change of race night to a Saturday in 1952 saw a significant decline. Norrie Isbister soldiered on in 1953 but could not prevent the demise of the Giants.

A greyhound racing track replaced the shale for many years before speedway returned in 1999.

Saracen Park is now the home of both the Glasgow Tigers speedway team and Ashfield F. C..

Notable riders[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Bamford, R & Jarvis J.(2001). Homes of British Speedway. ISBN 0-7524-2210-3
  2. ^ Henry, J. & Moultray, I. (2001). Speedway in Scotland. ISBN 0-7524-2229-4
  3. ^ a b White,J. (2003) White Ghost: The Ken Le Breton Story, The History Press Ltd. ISBN 0-7524-2873-X

External links[edit]