Blast From The Past

vintage speedway racing


Blast From The Past - bringing the spectacle, sound and smell of vintage speedway to life.

Do you remember the days when speedway riders wore black leathers, rode chrome-plated JAP-engined bikes and had names like Tich, Sid and Bert?  Have you ever looked at old speedway newsreels or thumbed through a dog-eared copy of a speedway magazine and wondered “what was it like in the old days?”  If you remember those days or just want to know what it was like before laydowns, kevlars and 15 heat matches, then come and see Blast From The Past when we visit a track near you.

Blast From The Past was started by Colin Smith in the early 1990s after a request to show modern day supporters what speedway was like in the 1950s and 1960s.  The riders are ex-professionals or enthusiasts, and over the years have appeared at most speedway tracks across the UK.  The format of the racing ranges from individual riders battling it out in the race jackets of often long forgotten teams, to four man-per-team challenge matches and best pairs events.

The machines ridden are all powered by the famous JAP (J.A.Prestwich) speedway engine and housed in many types of different frames of the period including Erskine, Excelsior, Huck Fynn and Rotrax.  The JAP speedway engine was manufactured at the company’s large factory in Tottenham, North London together with other engines for a wide variety of other uses including light aircraft, agricultural machinery, racing cars and performance road motorcycles.  The JAP engine dominated the sport for nearly 40 years and was a true testament to British engineering.

The dedication to reliving this era is funded by the riders themselves who maintain their machines, pay their own travelling expenses and take time off work to do what they love best - riding vintage speedway.  The riders hope you will come to see them when they visit your local track.  They look forward to meeting you, answering your questions and sharing with you on track some of speedways golden history.