Ole Olsen (speedway rider)


Ole Olsen (speedway rider)
Ole Olsen
Ole Olsen Intercontinental Final.jpg
Personal information
Nationality Denmark Denmark
Date of birth November 16, 1946 (1946-11-16) (age 65)
Place of birth    Haderslev, Denmark
Current club information
Career status Retired
Career history
Newcastle Diamonds
Wolverhampton Wolves
Coventry Bees
1967-1969
1970-1975
1976-1983
Individual honours
World Champion
Danish Champion

Nordic Champion
British League Riders Champion
Long Track World Champion
Golden Helmet of Pardubice (CZE)

Australian Champion
NSW State Champion (Aust)
1971, 1975, 1978
1967, 1968, 1969, 1970,
1971, 1972, 1973
1971, 1973, 1974
1972, 1976, 1977, 1978
1973
1970, 1971, 1972, 1975
1977, 1979, 1980
1976
1972
Team honours
World Team Cup Winner
World Pairs Champion
British League Champion
British League Pairs Champion
British League Cup
1978, 1981, 1983
1979
1978, 1979
1978
1981

Ole Olsen (born 16 November 1946 in Haderslev, Denmark)[1] is a former international motorcycle speedway rider.

Olsen won the Speedway World Championship three times, in 1971, 1975, and 1978. He also won the World Long track Championship in 1973. In 1979 Olsen won Speedway World Pairs Championship with Hans Nielsen.

Olsen's success greatly helped popularize the sport in Denmark which led to him building and opening a track at Vojens, the 15,000 capacity Vojens Speedway Center, which has held many Danish Championships as well as the 1988 and 1994 Speedway World Finals (1994 being the last under the old single meeting format) while it hosted the Speedway Grand Prix of Denmark from 1995 until 2002, after which the Danish GP was moved to the larger capacity Parken Stadium in Copenhagen.[2]

Contents

Career summary

Olsen first rode in the UK for the Newcastle Diamonds in the British League from 1967 until 1969. He then moved to the Wolverhampton Wolves, where he remained from 1970 until then end of the 1975 season. In 1976 he joined the Coventry Bees where he enjoyed the most success, winning two British League titles as well as the 1981 League Cup. Olsen has also won the British League Riders Championship in 1972, 1976, 1977 and 1978.

Olsen was close to winning two further World Championship titles. In the 1972 final at Wembley whilst in second place he fell, and despite winning his other four heats, he was beaten by Ivan Mauger. In 1977, John Boulger fell on a rain soaked track whilst Olsen was leading. In the re-run of the heat, Olsen was beaten by the eventual winner Mauger again. Olsen had the distinction of winning the last ever speedway race held at the original Wembley Stadium. In a run-off for second place in the 1981 World Final he beat Coventry team mate Tommy Knudsen.[3]

At the height of his success and popularity, Ole was the biggest sports star in Denmark, a country with no Olympic team at that time.

World final appearances

After retirement

Olsen became the FIM Speedway Grand Prix race director.

References

  1. ^ Oakes, Peter; Mauger, Ivan OBE, MBE (1976). Who's Who of World Speedway. Studio Publications (Ipswich) Ltd. ISBN 0-904584-04-6. 
  2. ^ "History of Vojens". speedway.dk. http://www.speedway.dk/index.php?page=history&hl=en_US. Retrieved 2008-09-23. 
  3. ^ Bamford, R. & Shailes, G. (2002). A History of the World Speedway Championship. Stroud: Tempus Publishing. ISBN 0-7524-2402-5

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