Stan Dibben - World Champion Sidecar Rider
"A pleasure to commend the book and to compliment the man"
Allan Robinson MBE
Stan lives life not just to the full, but right on the edge! There are no words to describe someone who has been a world champion sidecar rider - the one just barely in the sidecar, balancing the machine with his body at 150mph! Even more amazingly, by then Stan had already been a professional trumpet player, electrician and sailor as well as a highly respected motorcycle racer on the GP circuit. He worked with some of the well known names at both BSA and Norton, raced the first ever Dommie Racer, helped in the successful world land speed record set by Donald Campbell in Bluebird, and then became the man who did so much to introduce NGK spark plugs into the UK. He even designed supermarket trolleys that handled 'like a Ferrari'! This is the remarkable story of an amazing man who has managed to fit more fun and adventure into his years than most of us would even dream of. His story is uplifting, and a remarkable insight into the world of sidecar racing and British industry. A book that will fill not just fill you with wonder, but one that will also open your eyes on a now rapidly fading era.
I always look forward to reading a book on a subject that I am not too familiar with - particularly one that fascinates at the same time. And this book certainly provides everything I could wish for on both fronts. It is a very engaging story of a very gentle mild-mannered man who have lived a life of extremes.
It's a relatively light read of 128 pages, but jam packed with great stories. It covers his life from his boarding school, through several years in the Navy, his years spent on solo and sidecar motorcycles and his involvement with the 1964 Campbell Bluebird world speed record. His subsequent career with NGK spark plugs (Stan was instrumental in their introduction into the UK) is also included, right through to his retirement.
Stan certainly manages to convey the difficulty and danger of racing in a sidecar - I only wish there was more of it to see on the circuits these days. It's a fast, skillful and dangerous sport and it a pleasure to read a book on a subject that gets so little coverage.
I have never met Stan, but after reading this book, I certainly would like to!
- Foreword by Allan Robinson MBE
- Foreword by George Cohen
- Rude awakenings
- There's a war on!
- A war in uniform
- Back to civilian life
- Into the motorcycle industry
- Sidecar racing
- Out of racing and into industry
- The sidecar passenger (ballast)
- Bluebird and the 1964 Land Speed Record attempt
- A whole new life
- Shopping trolley folly
- Family life
- Final thoughts