FORMER world speedway champion Ronnie Moore has died aged 85.

The Wimbledon Dons legend was the youngest ever world champion in 1954 as a 21-year-old, having qualified as a 17-year-old in 1950, and took his other world crown in 1959.

Moore, who was also world runner-up three times ( first rode the Odsal track as a 17-year-old as a member of the visiting Wimbledon team and later set the track record there.

Born in Hobart, Tasmania, Moore always regarded himself as a New Zealander, forming part of the 'Kiwi Trinity' with Barry Briggs and Ivan Mauger, with the trio lifting 12 individual world titles between them.

Moore began riding at Aranui Speedway in Christchurch, New Zealand in 1949 at the age of 15, but moved to England and rode for the Dons from 1950-56.

In 1957-58, he switched his attention to motor racing, but returned to ride for the Dons in late 1958 and stayed with them until 1963, when he decided to retire from racing after breaking his leg in a track crash.

He began riding again in New Zealand in the mid-1960s and made a comeback with Wimbledon in 1969 and reached the World Final at the age of 36.

In 1970 he won the World Pairs Championship with Mauger and retired from racing in the British League at the end of 1972, apart from a couple of meetings for Coventry Bees in August 1974, but continued riding speedway until 1975 when he suffered severe head injuries in a crash at Jerilderie Park Speedway in New South Wales.[1] Moore won the New Zealand Championship in 1956, 1962, 1968 and 1969.

World Individual Championship[edit] In 1950 at the age of 17, Moore was the youngest rider ever to qualify for the final of the Speedway World Championship. He won the championship in 1954 and again in 1959. He also finished runner up on three further occasions. His first win was all the more notable given the facts that he was still only 21 years of age, that he was riding with a broken leg and that he won with a maximum score.[2]