NEWPORT SPEEDWAY IN 1967
Newport Wasps replaced one World Class Swedish star with another, Tobjorn Harryson. Harryson is possibly one of the most exciting riders ever to have graced Somerton Park and was a firm favourite with fans of Newport as well as supporters of other teams.
Newport made a very strong start to the season. A challenge match victory in their first fixture with Newcastle was followed by emphatic wins over Wolverhampton and Sheffield. Their first away fixture brought them a 43-35 victory at Cradley Heath. The fourth match brought them victory at home to Oxford before significant reverses at Edinburgh and Newcastle away. In mid May they suffered a home reverse against Poole before picking up a victory at Kings Lynn. Jon Erskine was in the headlines after scoring an eighteen point maximum in defeat at Poole. Sadly his Newport Wasps team mates could only contribute an additional 15 points between them. This was only the second 18 pointer since the league was formed in 1965, the first was by Cyril Maidment in 1966. Later that month the Wasps also snatched a 40-38 victory at Exeter.
Although knocked out of the Cup to Long Eaton all seemed rosy as the Wasps continued their fine form placing them in fifth place at the start of July. However, the season tailed off rather as Newport went down in a number of their later fixtures heavily despite solid home form. The loss of Harryson to international commitments and injury was a key factor.
Somerton Park hosted a Great Britain v Sweden fixture ending in a 62-46 victory for the hosts (the Swedes won the series 3-2). Reg Luckhurst won the Severn Bridge Triphy individual event. Harryson finished fifth behind Barry Briggs in the British League Riders Championship.
Tragically, promoter Ken Sharples died in a car accident shortly after resigning as promoter.
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BRITISH LEAGUE CHAMPIONSHIP 1967
Newport v West Ham (14/7/67)