Barry Briggs

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Barry Briggs
Barry Briggs.JPG
Born (1934-12-30) 30 December 1934 (age 83)
Christchurch, New Zealand
Nationality  New Zealand
Current club information
Career status Retired (1976)
Career history
1952–1959, 1974-1975 Wimbledon Dons
1960 New Cross Rangers
1961–1963 Southampton Saints
1964–1972 Swindon Robins
1976 Hull Vikings
Individual honours
1957, 1958, 1964, 1966 World Champion
1959, 1963 New Zealand Champion
1961, 1964, 1965, 1966,
1967, 1969
British Champion
1965, 1966, 1967, 1968,
1969, 1970
British League Riders Champion
1955 London Riders' Champion
1958 Southern Riders' Champion
1964, 1966, 1967, 1970 Midland Riders' Champion
1967 Scottish Open Champion
1958, 1961, 1965 Pride of the Midlands winner
1960, 1963, 1964 Pride of the South winner
1961, 1963, 1965 The Laurels
1966 Olympique
1964 FIM Internationale
Team honours
1968, 1971 World Team Cup
1954, 1955, 1956,
1958, 1962
National League Champion
1967 British League Champion
1961 National League KO Cup Winner
1953, 1956, 1961 National Trophy Winner
1967, 1968 Midland Cup Winner
1974 London Cup Winner
1954 RAC Cup Winner

Barry Briggs MBE (born 30 December 1934) from Christchurch, New Zealand is a former Speedway rider.


He won the World Individual Championship title four times – in 1957, 1958, 1964 and 1966.[1] He appeared in a record 17 consecutive World Individual finals (1954–70), and a record 18 in all, during which he scored a record 201 points. He also won the London Riders' Championship in 1955 whilst riding for the Wimbledon Dons.[2] He is also a six-time winner of the British Championship. He won the first final in 1961 and then dominated the sixties titles by winning in 1964, 1965, 1966, 1967, and 1969.[3] Briggs also twice won his home title, the New Zealand Championship, winning in 1959 and again in 1963.

Briggs also created a domestic record by winning the British League Riders Championship for six consecutive years from 1965–1970, representing the Swindon Robins.[4]

Briggs retired from British league racing in 1972 after an accident during Heat 5 of the World Final at Wembley Stadium with Swedish rider Bernt Persson.[5] As a result of the accident, Briggs lost the index finger of his left hand,[6] but returned in 1974, then announcing in 1975 that this would be his last season[7] but actually returning for another year with Hull Vikings, retiring for a final time in 1976.

During the early to mid-1970s, Briggs was one of a number of World Champion riders (along with fellow kiwi Ivan Mauger and Denmark's Ole Olsen) as well as a number of others such as Edward Jancarz and Zenon Plech from Poland and England's Chris Pusey, who embarked on world tours to Australia, his native New Zealand and the USA. Their trips to the USA, primarily the Costa Mesa Speedway in Los Angeles, helped spark the American motorcycle speedway scene which had been dormant on the world stage since the pre-World War II days of 1937 World Champion Jack Milne, his brother Cordy Milne and Wilbur Lamoreaux.

After retirement[edit]

In 1973 Briggs was awarded an MBE for his services to sport and in 1990 he was inducted into the New Zealand Sports Hall of Fame. From 17 March 2010 Briggs took part in a John o' Groats to Land's End bike ride to raise money for the BBC's Sport Relief.[8]

In retirement, Briggs became the mentor to many young riders who went on to race in World Finals including fellow Kiwi Mitch Shirra. He also lent his voice to television, becoming a respected speedway commentator in England and Europe, as well as the USA.

World final appearances[edit]

Individual World Championship[edit]

World Pairs Championship[edit]

World Team Cup[edit]

Note: Briggs rode for Great Britain in the World Team Cup from 1962

World Longtrack Final[edit]

External links[edit]


  1. ^ a b Bamford, R. & Shailes, G. (2002). A History of the World Speedway Championship. Stroud: Tempus Publishing. ISBN 0-7524-2402-5
  2. ^ Jacobs, Norman (2001). Speedway in London. Stroud: Tempus Publishing ISBN 0-7524-2221-9
  3. ^ Belton, Brian (2003). Hammerin' Round. Stroud: Tempus Publishing ISBN 0-7524-2438-6
  4. ^ Martin Rogers (1978). The Illustrated History of Speedway. Studio Publications (Ipswich) Ltd. ISBN 0-904584-45-3
  5. ^ Barry Briggs Wembley and beyond
  6. ^ Bott, Richard (1973) The Champions Book of Speedway No. 4, Stanley Paul & Co. Ltd., ISBN 0-09-116380-3, pp. 24–31
  7. ^ Lawson,K (2018) “Rebels 1975 – The Last Season”.pg144 ISBN 978-0-244-99725-0
  8. ^ "Barry Briggs: The Ride". Retrieved 2010-03-04.