Speedway legend Ivan Mauger passes
Ivan Mauger, six-time motorcycle speedway world champion, has passed away on the Gold Coast this morning at the age of 78.
Ivan Mauger was born in Christchurch in 1939 and won six world speedway titles between 1968 and 1979. He was named NZ Sportsperson of the Year in 1977 and 1979, and was awarded an MBE in 1976, and an OBE in 1989.
Speedway New Zealand CEO, John McCallum, told the NZ Herald that Mauger was a “true New Zealand sporting icon,” and that he was the greatest speedway racer of all time.
Mauger was inducted into the NZ Sports Hall of Fame in 1990, carried the Olympic Torch into the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games, and last raced in Adelaide in 1986. There he rode in the South Australia 150 Jubilee and was presented with the winner's trophy by his idol Jack Young. By the end of his career, Mauger had won a total of 15 world titles, including three long-track crowns, two pairs titles and four team championships on top of his other national and international crowns.
Mauger had been suffering from a form of dementia for several years. The legend is survived by his wife, Raye, son Kym and daughters Debbie and Julie.