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Stars that died 2010

Monday, April 29, 2013

Neil Street, Australian speedway rider, died from cancer/brain hemorrhage he was 80.



Neil Street OAM was an international motorcycle speedway rider, manager and engineer, who first came to Britain in 1952 to ride for the Exeter Falcons. Street was born in Melbourne, Australia.[1]
He rode for the Swindon Robins and the Newport Wasps before retiring from racing in 1976. He made international appearances for Australia, Australasia, Great Britain and one for Norway![2] In 2002 he was awarded the Order of Australia in the Australia Day 'Motor Sport' Awards for his services to speedway.

(15 January 1931 – 6 October 2011) 

Management

In 1981 he was appointed team manager of the Weymouth Wildcats. When they closed in 1984 he became manager of the Poole Pirates and was still team manger there in 1999 when he handed over to current Great Britain speedway team manager Neil Middleditch. In 1984 he was also the team manager of the Exeter Falcons. In 1997 he also took over as manager of the Newport Wasps and stayed in charge there until 2005.
Street was also manager of the Australia speedway team and was in charge when they won the World Team Cup in 1999 and the Speedway World Cup in 2001 and 2002. In 2009, Street returned to take charge of the Newport Wasps for after the club returned to racing following the death of promoter Tim Stone in 2008.[citation needed]

Family

His daughter Carole married motorcycle speedway rider Phil Crump and his grandson, Jason Crump, has won the World Speedway Championship three times, in 2004, 2006 and 2009.[3]

Engine development

In 1974–1975 and his training as a skilled engineer came to prominence. Street had always built his own frames and tuned his engines. Ivan Tighe designed a four valve head for the Jawa engine, with input from Neil Street. The engine was off the drawing board and into manufacture in just four weeks. The engine was taken to Newcastle for a meeting there the night before the Australian championships, but the meeting was rained off, so the engine was yet to complete one lap.[citation needed]
Phil Crump used the engine in the Australian Championships at Sydney and, with the increased power, took nearly 3 seconds off the track record held by Jim Airey immediately. This was considered more remarkable feat considering the fact that the engine was straight from of the workshop and used in a top class speedway meeting. Crump had been given the option of his normal 2-valve engine, but after trying the 4-valve refused to get off the motorcycle.

Death

Street died at home in his native Melbourne on 6 October 2011, aged 80. He had battled with cancer for 5 years, but kept the illness hidden from the media. His cancer spread to his leg and as a result had a fall a few weeks prior to his death; he also kept this to himself. He was unaware that the fall had caused a brain hemorrhage from an impact to his head. Street slipped into a coma state during his sleep one night and died on 6 October.[4]


To see more of who died in 2011 click here

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