Motherwell Eagles

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Lanarkshire Eagles
Club information
Track address The Stadium
Milton Street
Country Scotland
Founded 1951
Closed 1954
Club facts
Colours Black and Gold
Track size 430 yards (390 m)
Major team honours
Winners Northern Shield 1954

The Lanarkshire Eagles were a motorcycle speedway team based in Motherwell in Scotland that participated in the British National League Division Two from 1951 and 1954.[1]

Brief history[edit]

The team was based at The Stadium, in Milton Street, Motherwell, which was used primarily for greyhound racing but was designed with speedway in mind; the bends wide enough for six cars side by side.[1][2]

The first meeting was held on the 14 July 1950 in a challenge match before the Eagles joined the league in 1951.[1] The Eagles started out in the British National League Division Two with veteran ex-Glasgow Tigers Will Lowther and Joe Crowther and ex-Edinburgh rider Danny Lee in the line up. Bill Baird, a pioneer Eagle, became the only rider to ride for all four Scottish teams starting as a Glasgow Tiger before moves to Edinburgh then Ashfield. The team was strengthened late in 1951 by the transfer of Derick Close from Newcastle. In 1952, Eagles rider Derek Close reached the final of the Speedway World Championship. The Eagles operated until the end of the 1954 season and would have run in 1955 but for the reluctance of teams in England to travel up to Scotland.

The top man was Derick Close, signed from the Newcastle Diamonds in 1951, and he was supported by Gordon McGregor, an ex- Glasgow Tiger, who was a founder Eagle in 1951. The team also featured Australians Keith Gurtner and Ron Phillips who transferred over when the Ashfield Giants left the League. Due to his never say die approach, the fans favourite was Bluey (Eric) Scott who joined the Eagles in 1951. Popular Australian Noel Watson, one of the earliest Eagles signings in 1950 along with Clive Gressor, was killed in his home country in 1953. Tommy Miller, one of the top Scottish speedway stars of the day, joined the Eagles in 1954 but moved on to the Coventry Bees mid-season.

Speedway returned for a short spell in 1958 when Ian Hoskins established the Golden Eagles who featured Doug and Willie Templeton, Gordon Mitchell, Jimmy Tannock, Freddie Greenwell and gave a shale debut to George Hunter.

The site was redeveloped and was used briefly in 1971/72 for three long track events and a speedway meeting on a smaller circuit built on the centre green. [2]

Note: Motherwell Eagles was the name of a local Motherwell motorcycle club.

Notable riders[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Bamford, R & Jarvis J.(2001). Homes of British Speedway. ISBN 0-7524-2210-3
  2. ^ a b Henry, J. & Moultray, I. (2001). Speedway in Scotland. ISBN 0-7524-2229-4