Review by Dick Barrie in Berwick programme September 8th

Speedway doyen with 58 years experience of the sport has again kindly mentioned my work in his Berwick programme notes of September 8th:-

Now, you might recall I mentioned speedway author Jeff Scott on this page last week, and told you he’d be here next Saturday, signing copies of his books “Shale Britannia” and “Shifting Shale”.

Tonight I thought I might share a couple of paragraphs and quotes from the latter volume with you, if only to give you an idea of what to expect if you decide on a copy of “Shifting Shale” as a Christmas present for a speedway devotee close to you, or even as a treat for yourself.

Writing of a slick Rye House presentation, Jeff hazarded that referee Barbara Horley ran the meeting “as though she were on a promise at the end of the event”

Of Glasgow’s centre-green presenter Michael Max – “a lumbering mastodon” I think Jeff once called him – spotted lurking in the pits at Brough Park one evening, “with hands resolutely in his anorak pockets as though he’s the defending world pocket billiards champion”.

When our own Sam Martin was awarded a Conference League trophy at last year’s SRA Dinner, Jeff quotes fellow Aussie Steve Johnson shouting “Hey! He’s a good kid! Well done, Shagger!”

Describing Sophie Blake interviewing Scott Nicholls on TV at Lonigno in 2006 (yes, that GP) he noticed “she clearly found herself either excited or cold”.

Of Danny Bird: “In and out of the Reading team with a speed that wouldn’t disgrace Ben Johnson”.

But best of all, there’s a passage written after Jeff had come here to a meeting rained off after a few heats (Berwick? Rain?) when he didn’t reckon he’d manage to get back within the statutory next three matches. Knowing the manner in which other tracks work and reading the programme disclaimer we all have to print, he decided to brass-neck it anyway, and went up to our office. He writes:

“I explained myself and without any hesitation, the attractive Carol immediately refunded my entrance money in a charmingly friendly fashion, wished me well with my book and told me to rush back to Berwick again when the weather should be better. This prompt refund surprised me, and it reflected extremely well on the club, the friendly staff and indicated to me that Peter Waite runs a professional operation that has a clear idea of how to offer good customer service and makes people want to come back to his club”.

Well, can’t argue with that, Jeff – see you next Saturday!

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