Joe Abbott (speedway rider)

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Joe Abbott
Joe abbott.png
Born (1902-04-12)12 April 1902
Burnley, England
Died 1 July 1950(1950-07-01) (aged 48)
Nationality British
Current club information
Career status Retired
Career history
1932-1937, 1939
Belle Vue Aces
Harringay Racers
Odsal Boomerangs
Individual honours
Team honours
1933, 1934, 1935, 1936
1933, 1934, 1935, 1936
1934, 1935, 1936, 1937
National League Champion
National Trophy Winner
A.C.U. Cup Winner
British Speedway Cup Winner

John Patrick 'Joe' Abbott (12 April 1902 in Burnley, England[1] – 1 July 1950) was an international motorcycle speedway rider who rode in the World Championship final in 1937.[2]

Career summary[edit]

Joe began his career with local track Burnley in 1928 before moving onto Preston for two seasons.[3] He then joined the Belle Vue Aces and stayed there until the outbreak of World War II. At Belle Vue he formed a formidable partnership with Frank Charles which they utilised internationally.[4] He made fifteen appearances for England between 1930 and 1939 and qualified for a World Final.

After the war he became captain of the Harringay Racers in 1947 and transferred to the Odsal Boomerangs in Bradford towards the end of the 1947 season.[3]

On 21 June 1949 Joe was riding in live televised meeting at West Ham Stadium against the West Ham Hammers. Joe crashed and suffered serious injury, but in the crowd were dozens of ambulance men from Poplar hospital who rushed him there immediately.[4] The quick actions saved his life.

World Final appearances[edit]


On 1 July 1950 in the National League match for the Boomerangs against West Ham, Joe, who was now 48 years old fell in his second race and was hit by a following rider and was instantly killed. The riders and promoters decided to carry on with the meeting, as they believed Joe would have wished it. Fans left Odsal Stadium unaware that Joe, with nicknames such as 'India-rubber Man',[1] and "Ironman", had died.


  1. ^ a b Addison J. (1948). The People Speedway Guide. Odhams Press Limited
  2. ^ a b Bamford, R. & Shailes, G. (2002). A History of the World Speedway Championship. Stroud: Tempus Publishing. ISBN 0-7524-2402-5
  3. ^ a b Morgan, Tom (1949) Who's Who in Speedway, Sport-in-Print, p. 7
  4. ^ a b Belton, Brian (2003). Hammerin' Round. Stroud: Tempus Publishing ISBN 0-7524-2438-6

External links[edit]