This book is by way of a summit meeting between John Chaplin, a career Fleet Street journalist and the world’s best speedway writer, and John Somerville, an enthusiast par excellence, who has amassed the world’s biggest and best speedway image bank.
The dynamic duo, who have long wanted to work together, have now teamed up to bring you the greatest stories about the greatest personalities from the world’s most exciting sport, illustrated with the greatest photographs.
In 37 chapters they cover subjects as diverse as John Mills and Dirk Bogarde as speedway stars on celluloid; Peter Craven’s Pyjamas; Hail to the Leg-trailers; the Duggan Phenomenon; Alice Hart’s Flying Circus; the Low-down on Rocket Bikes, and much, much more.
All the drama, the romance, the triumphs and the tragedies of speedway’s 84-year rollercoaster existence are here . . . in Chaplin’s inimitable words and Somerville’s fabulous pictures.
John Chaplin is generally acknowledged throughout the speedway world to be the leading authority on the history of the sport. An author and broadcaster, his pedigree goes back almost 60 years, and this book is based on his writings during that time, including his acclaimed regular contributions to Speedway Star magazine and his own hugely successful Vintage Speedway magazine.
John Somerville has spent a fortune acquiring from the world’s top speedway photographers their best and most vivid pictures. They appear in publications throughout the world. He is dedicated to preserving the sport’s most iconic images.
As far as I am aware this is the first time the two Johns have collaborated in the production of a book although John Chaplin has written a number of books and the images collected by John Somerville have graced many of the speedway books and websites available today indeed this website would be much diminished without the willing help of both these gentlemen
Speedway Books by John Chaplin and publications he has been associated with
Ivan Mauger:The Man Behind the Myth by John Chaplin
Tom Farndon:The Greatest Speedway Rider of Them All by Norman Jacobs, John Chaplin
Ove Fundin:Speedway Superstar by John Chaplin
John Chaplin"s Speedway Special: The Classic Legends
Speedway:The Story Of The World Championship by John Chaplin
A Fistful Of Twistgrip by John Chaplin
Main Dane:My Story By Hans Nielsen (Edit/Production/Design by John Chaplin)
History Of The Speedway Hoskins By Ian Hoskins (Edit/Production/Design by John Chaplin)