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David Howe

Full Name: David Peter Howe.
Born: 1st March 1982, Leicester.
Starting Average: 6.08.

Career Details
David’s father Dick was a grass track rider for 31 years, and David first rode speedway at the age of just nine. From a very early age it was clear that David had a great talent for speedway, and this caught the eye of then Peterborough promoter Peter Oakes. Wolves’ fans will remember that magical night at Peterborough in October 1996 when they celebrated their team’s fantastic Cup Final win on the Alwalton track. At the end of the presentations, Oakes politely asked the celebrating fans whether they would mind clearing the track, as there was a young lad waiting patiently to put in a few laps. The rider? – a fourteen year old David Howe. I’m sure that nobody could have expected that six years later, David would be joining those same fans in similar celebrations at Eastbourne.

After a spell as the Peterborough mascot, David made his debut in the 1997 Amateur League (Division 3) shortly after his 15th birthday. He made a dream star to his speedway career, scoring a fifteen point maximum in his first ever meeting. In that first season for the Pumas, a team that also featured Simon Stead and Oliver Allen, David scored eleven maximums from twenty four matches for an average of 11.02 as the club won the Amateur league title.

In 1998, at the age of 16, he moved into the Premier League with Peterborough. He made his international debut in April 1998 for England Under 21 against Russia, where he scored – you guessed it – a maximum. 1998 was a superb season for David as he averaged almost eight points per meeting as Peterborough secured the Premier League title.

A new promotion team took over at Peterborough for the 1999 season, and moved the club into the Elite League. Promoter Jim Lynch persuaded David to move up with them, and he was the youngest rider to compete in the Elite League that season. The Panthers won the Elite League in 1999 – which meant that in his three seasons in speedway, David had won all three Division titles in successive seasons – and all by the age of seventeen! This is a record I feel sure will never be equalled. David finished his first season in the big league with a promising 5.53 average from 44 matches.

2000 was another season of progress. Although his final average increased only slightly, David held down a place in the top five of the team all season, and was delighted to win the British Under 21 Final at Edinburgh in April. This made up for that most rare of seasons for Howe – no league championship to celebrate!

2001 continued his slow progress with Peterborough as his average edged up to just below six. Wolves’ fans may remember a controversial British Under 21 Final at Monmore Green where David’s hopes of retaining his title were dashed after he was excluded for causing great rival Simon Stead to fall. David was also disappointed to score just eight points in the Under 21 World Final on his home track in August. By the end of the year, it was fair to say his progress in the sport was beginning to stall after such a spectacular start. A change of tracks was what was needed to kick start his career, and Panthers Promoter Jim Lynch agreed to loan David to Wolves for the 2002 season.

David settled at Monmore Green immediately. Riding at number two, he soon formed a fine understanding with Mikael Karlsson, and adapted well to a much smaller home track. He scored eleven points in his first official match at Monmore, and on 12 August, secured his first ever maximum in the top division, with ten paid twelve against Kings Lynn. Although he did suffer a sticky patch mid season when his hectic schedule proved a little too much for him, David quickly returned to form. By the end of the year, he had improved by almost a point per match, and his 300 points were vital in Wolves’ title winning season. A match winning 14+1 from seven rides against Peterborough in the playoffs must have been difficult for Panthers’ fans to swallow… He loved it at Monmore Green, and at the end of the season, Chris Van Straaten agreed a club record deal with Peterborough to secure his full transfer.

David starts 2003 on a bargain rolling average, and will be looking to continue his progress by moving into the third heat leader position before the season is over. David has achieved more in his six seasons in the sport than many riders achieve in their whole career – four league titles and a British Under 21 Championship – and he is still only 21. He remains one of Britain’s best prospects for the future, and is a very popular member of the Wolves team.

David Howe

M

R

P

BP

T

Ave

F

P

1998

Peterborough

D2

34

156

269

35

304

7.79

0

3

1999

Peterborough

D1

44

193

216

51

267

5.53

0

0

2000

Peterborough

D1

37

165

196

38

234

5.67

0

0

2001

Peterborough

D1

39

174

209

46

255

5.86

0

0

2002

Wolves

D1

41

180

255

45

300

6.67

0

1

Career Total

D1

161

712

876

180

1056

5.93

0

1

Wolves Total

41

180

255

45

300

6.67

0

1

Mark Rowe


..

Acknowledgements:
Many photographs on this site are copyright/courtesy of John Hipkiss - Wolverhampton Track Photographer.
The opinions expressed on this site are not necessarily those of the promotion/management of Wolverhampton Speedway.
Lawtech Design 2003.