Following the recent ACU Board of Directors meeting, the ACU are pleased to confirm that Tony Steele has been elected as the new Vice-Chairman following Tristan Robinson’s move to the Trials and Enduro committee, Tony is also the current ACU Track Racing Committee Chairman.
Tony found an interest in Motorcycle sport from a very young age and would often cycle to local events in Leicestershire with the Leicester Query club staging many of the meetings. When Speedway returned to Leicester in 1968, he was fortunate to join the track staff and was initially involved in track maintenance on race nights before expanding into administration duties and helping to organise the club’s operations.
Tony later moved to Kings Lynn and then Peterborough before joining the Speedway Control Board Referee Panel in the early 90’s and has been a referee at UK domestic meetings ever since attending around 60 meetings a year. In 1996 Tony gained his FIM Speedway Referee’s Licence which he maintained until compulsory retirement at the age of 55 in 2010
In 2009 he also became a licensed “Meeting Steward” to provide improved communication between the Speedway officials and the Broadcast Company at live televised meetings in the UK and on behalf of the BSPA/SCB has managed and provided track and support staff for the running of the FIM Speedway Grand Prix and other FIM Speedway meetings staged in the UK.
From 2011 until now Tony has been a member of the CCP (FIM Track Racing Commission) and joined the Speedway Control Bureau and ACU Track Racing Committee in 2017 before becoming Chairman in 2019.
Away from the ACU, Tony had a highly successful career within the Insurance industry, having started his working life at a family-owned Insurance Broking Business in 1974 which grew to become one of the largest Independent commercial Insurance brokers in the Midlands. Eventually the business was sold to the Oval Group and is now part of the Arthur J Gallagher Group, the fourth largest Insurance Broker in the world. Tony recently retired from his position as Broking Director/Manager for the East Midland sector of the business at the end of 2020.
Speaking of his recent appointment, Tony Steele commented ‘All disciplines are facing difficult times as Covid has had a devastating effect financially as well as seriously affecting our sporting activity. Prior to Covid however, there has been a continuous downturn in numbers coming into the various disciplines. There are many reasons for this, but my aim would be to concentrate on bringing riders into the sport at grass roots level particularly in the youth classes. For example, in Track Racing, the cost of medical cover has risen, and it makes life difficult for clubs as youth competition does not attract the paying public in sufficient numbers. Fortunately, some high-profile riders are also aware of the problem, so the plan is to try and re-establish a proper youth series with support for the clubs who are able and willing to stage the rounds. It is important for us to remember that you cannot be a champion if there is no one to race against.’