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Dirt-track racing first took place at this track in Rye House on the 27th May 1934 where they continued staging Sunday meetings once a fortnight and indulging in training, schooling and discovering future talent. The nurturing and development of future stars became something for which the tracks at Rye House became known world wide. (See a pupils comment here). Not only did 1934 see the start of speedway (dirt-track) at this Hertfordshire track it also hosted during June a grass-track meeting run by the Hertford and District Motorcycle and Car Club.  

1937 saw the Harringay Speedway Motorcycle and Car Club promoting open-licence events and in 1938 the Hackney Wick Speedway Motor Club participated in the Sunday Dirt-track League at this venue.

The track at Rye House continued to operate during the war years staging open meeting promoted by the Harringay Speedway Motorcycle and Car Club but known as Dick Case’s Speedway as it was he, the former Australian rider, who was responsible for organising these meeting. Open meetings, several a year, continued through the war years with during 1943 all proceeds being donated to the British Red Cross Prisoners of War Parcels Fund.

The first meeting held in 1945 was the Victory in Europe Reunion Trophy, held on August 5th and won by Roy Craighead. The track was rented to West Ham in order to give their riders plenty of practice, brushing off the war time rust, to make sure they were competitive when regular racing started again.

Dick Case continued to organise the track during the next few years and why wouldn’t he as he was manager of the Pub situated right next to the track, to many his life must have seemed heaven of earth having two jobs both of which, to many, would seem the best of all possible combinations - running a pup and a speedway track.

1949 and George Kay took over the running of the speedway track, the venue continued to run Open Licence events and training with a team being entered in the Southern Area League in 1954 and competing in this league for the next four years during which time they became known as the Rye House Roosters. In 1951 the Hoddesdon track was to see a serious accident during a practice session when Robert Stocker was fatally injured.

The very last meeting held on this track took place on the 22nd September 1957 the Rye House team then moved to the new track to be built adjacent to the old one for the 1958 season. This the original track became a go-cart circuit and remains thus at the time of writing (2013) although now updated and modified I doubt those who raced it in the 1950s would now recognise it.

1938

1941

1952

1957

Click thumbnails to enlarge image
 Images kindly supplied by John Somerville and data from John Jarvis via his book
“Homes of British Speedway”

Thank you Gentleman

Rye House
the first track 1934 - 1957

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