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Death of champion speedway motorcycle rider, Ted Hubbard, of Lydden, Dover, and former Canterbury Crusader

A champion speedway motorcyclist has died.

Ted Hubbard, formerly of the Canterbury Crusaders team, passed away from cancer aged 70.

Ted Hubbard with tropies at the peak of his success. Picture from Jeanette Hubbard
Ted Hubbard with tropies at the peak of his success. Picture from Jeanette Hubbard

His funeral takes place at noon on Saturday, November 16, at Barham Crematorium.

All who knew him are welcome, says his family.

Mr Hubbard, who lived in Lydden all his life, won his first speedway race in Canterbury in 1970 but was entered by chance.

He was brought in at the last minute to replace a rider who had been excluded after accidentally going through the starting tape.

He joined the Canterbury team later that year and by 1975 moved up to division one to ride for the Hackney Hawks in London, doubling up with its sister club Rye House Rockets from Hertfordshire.

Ted Hubbard in action in his heyday. Picture from Jeanette Hubbard
Ted Hubbard in action in his heyday. Picture from Jeanette Hubbard

During the 1970s and early 1980s he represented his country in several international meetings, competing against opponents such as in Czechoslovakia, Poland and Denmark.

His most notable achievement was to represent both Canterbury and Rye House at the the Division Two Rider Championships at Wimbledon.

It was then that he made the rostrum on all three occasions in the 1970s, once for Canterbury and twice for Rye House.

He finally retired from speedway in 1981.

Edward Hubbard was born on June 20, 1949 and attended the former Castlemount Secondary School in Laureston Place, Dover.

Ted Hubbard in the Sixties. Picture from Jeanette Hubbard
Ted Hubbard in the Sixties. Picture from Jeanette Hubbard

He turned out to be an all-round sportsman as a boy, representing his school in boxing and was also a keen rugby player.

He also played adult Sunday League cricket at the age of 14 when he was found to be an accomplished bowler.

Mr Hubbard played darts for a number of pub teams in Lydden and Dover and was a member of the Dover Sea Cadets.

He nearly never made it to speedway when, at the age of 16, he was severely injured when a car reversed into him in Lydden.

His leg was so severely injured surgeons nearly amputated it.

Motorcycling wasn't Ted's only talent.Picture from Jeanette Hubbard
Motorcycling wasn't Ted's only talent.Picture from Jeanette Hubbard

But he recovered and at the age of 20 bought his own house from compensation from the accident.

All through his riding career Mr Hubbard worked full time, with his family's wholesale fruit and vegetable business, H& ER Hubbard in Lydden.

The enterprise later became a potato merchants' one, Hubbard's now run by his son Jason.

Mr Hubbard married his first wife Ingrid in 1971, Jason was born in 1972 and their other children Stuart in 1974, and Nicola in 1976..

Stuart died of cancer, aged just 37, in 2011.

Ted Hubbard met his second wife Jeanette in 1984 and they were together until his death.

He is also survived by his elder brother Dick Hubbard, a Dover district councillor in the 1980s and chairman of Lydden Parish Council from the early 1990s until last year.

He also leaves his grandchildren Hannah, Jay, Kai and Hari and great-grandchildren Oscar and Ruby.

Ted Hubbard died on Saturday, October 19, after a short stay in hospital.

He had suffered cancer for 18 months.

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