Ton van Heugten

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Ton van Heugten
Ton van Heugten (1980).jpg
Ton van Heugten (1980)
Nationality Netherlands Netherlands
Born (1945-09-09)September 9, 1945
Died (2008-03-27)March 27, 2008
Amersfoort, Netherlands
Motorcycle racing career statistics
Sidecarcross World Championship
Active years 1972–1989
Championships (1) 1981
1989 championship position 10th
Starts Wins Podiums Poles F. laps Points
223 34 106 1921

Antonius Maria van Heugten (9 September 1945 – 27 March 2008) was a Dutch sidecarcross rider and the 1981 World Champion in the sport, together with his passenger Frits Kiggen.[1]

He has also won the Dutch national sidecarcross championship four times, 1975, 1976, 1979 and 1980 and the FIM European Championship in 1975.

Biography[edit]

Antonius Maria van Heugten, commonly referred to as Ton van Heugten, was born on 9 September 1945, as the second-last of fifteen children. He was born into a family of motocross enthusiasts,[1] having nine brothers and five sisters.[2] One of his brothers, Cor van Heugten, was Dutch national sidecarcross champion, from 1964 to 1966, while another brother, Fons van Heugten, also competed in the FIM European Championship.

Ton van Heugten was a BMX pioneer in the Netherlands, taking part in competitive races when he wasn't allowed to race motocross in the 1950s.[3]

He began riding in the solo class from the age of ten, but was not allowed to take part in competitions due to his age. He won the Dutch national championship in the 50 cc class in 1963, in the 250 cc class in 1964 and 1965 and in the 500 cc class in 1966. He also competed in the Motocross World Championship. He suffered a complicated leg fracture in 1966.[1]

Van Heugten took up the sidecarcross sport in 1971 and remained active in motor sport until 1989. As his reason for switching from the solo version of the sport to the sidecarcross one at the age of 25, he stated that he considered it too late to switch once he was over 30.[1]

In 1982, he and Frits Kiggen took part in the Rally Paris-Dakar.[1]

Ton van Heugten died on 27 March 2008 of a heart attack, aged 62. He was buried in his home town Amersfoort on 2 April 2008.[1]

Sidecarcross world championship results[edit]

Ton van Heugten made his debut in the FIM Cup, a predecessor of the world championship, in 1972, in the second year of the competition. With his passenger Jaak Wery he achieved a third place overall in the competition.[4]

In 1974, he switched passengers, racing with Dick Steenbergen. He raced with Steenbergen for five seasons, winning the competition, now renamed the FIM European Championship, in 1975.[5] The team had a difficult year in 1978, struggling in the domestic championship and finishing only twelfth in Europe.

From 1979, Ton van Heugten used Frits Kiggen as his passenger, the two becoming a very successful combination. From 1980 onwards, the European championship was renamed the FIM World Championship and van Heugten, finishing fourth in its first year, became the second world champion in 1981,[6] despite Kiggen, his passenger, having broken his collar bone during the season and having to be replaced with Sies Hurkmans for four races.

Ton van Heugten continued to be a successful rider in the world championship, finishing in the top-three four more times. He won his last world championship race at the Portuguese GP in 1986, his last really strong season, finishing third overall.[7]

Ton van Heugten continued to race internationally until 1989, when he retired.

Season by season[edit]

The competition which was to become the sidecarcross world championship in 1980 originated as the FIM Cup in 1971 and was renamed to European championship in 1975. Van Heugtens's results in these three competitions were:[8]

Season Passenger Equipment Position Points Races Wins Second Third
1972 Jaak Wery Norton-Wasp 3 54 8 2 3
1973 Jaak Wery Norton-Wasp 12 17 2 1
1974 Dick Steenbergen Yamaha-Wasp 4 77 14 2 2
1975 Dick Steenbergen Yamaha-Hagon 1 141 18 5 3 4
1976 Dick Steenbergen Yamaha-Hagon 4 110 16 3 1 4
1977 Dick Steenbergen Yamaha-Hagon 9 29 6 2
1978 Dick Steenbergen Yamaha-Hagon 12 20 10
1979 Frits Kiggen Weslake-Wasp 6 82 14 1 3
1980 Frits Kiggen Yamaha-EML 4 126 18 2 1 5
1981 Frits Kiggen Yamaha-Wasp 1 169 14 9 1
Sies Hurkmans 47 4 1 2 1
1982 Frits Kiggen Yamaha-Wasp 3 102 8 4 1 3
Jaap van Vliet 22 4 1 1
1983 Jaap van Vliet Yamaha-Tri 15 24 3 1
1984 Frits Kiggen Folan-Wasp 2 232 20 4 1 4
1985 Frits Kiggen Folan-Wasp 3 238 18 3 6 2
1986 Frits Kiggen Folan-EML 3 39 2 2
Ton Maessen 74 6 1 1 2
Piet Vandeutekom 133 12 2 1 3
1987 Piet Vandeutekom Folan-VMC 36 6 2
1988 Andre Godschalk KTM-EML 12 36 6
Ralph Hoormann 47 4 2
1989 Epe Willems KTM-EML 10 96 14 3
Overall 1972 - 1989 1921 223 34 28 44
  • With the exception of Ralph Hoormann, who was German, all his passengers were Dutch nationals.

Honours[edit]

World Championship[edit]

  • Champions: (1) 1981
  • Runners-up: (1) 1984

European Championship[edit]

  • Champions: (1) 1975

Netherlands[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f Koenigsbeck, Axel (2008-03-31). "Ton van Heugten verstorben". Motor Sport Aktuell (in German). Archived from the original on April 4, 2008. Retrieved 2009-11-09. 
  2. ^ Does, Gerrit (2007-01-26). "University of BMX: BMX in the Netherlands in fact started in the 1950's, check this out!". FAT BMX Magazine. Retrieved 2009-11-09. 
  3. ^ "University of BMX : BMX pioneer Ton van Heugten dies of Heart Attack". FAT BMX Magazine. 2008-03-27. Retrieved 2009-11-09. 
  4. ^ "1972 European S/C Championship". The John Davey Pages. Retrieved 2009-11-09. 
  5. ^ "1975 European S/C Championship". The John Davey Pages. Retrieved 2009-11-09. 
  6. ^ "1981 European S/C Championship". The John Davey Pages. Retrieved 2009-11-09. 
  7. ^ "1986 European S/C Championship". The John Davey Pages. Retrieved 2009-11-09. 
  8. ^ "Ton van Heugten GP Record". The John Davey Pages. Retrieved 2009-11-09. 

External links[edit]

Sporting positions
Preceded by
Reinhard Böhler
Sidecarcross World Champion
1981
Succeeded by
Emil Bollhalder
Preceded by
new competition
Sidecarcross European Champion
1975
Succeeded by
Robert Grogg
Preceded by
Broer Dirkx
Dutch national sidecarcross champion
1975–1976
Succeeded by
Willie van de Laan
Preceded by
Willie van de Laan
Dutch national sidecarcross champion
1979–1980
Succeeded by
Jan Bakens