There’s a proud trophy double in the Williams family this weekend with the “flying Welshman”, legendary speedway star Freddie Williams, taking centre stage in Cardiff with his son, Tournament Director David Williams, in charge at Gleneagles.
Freddie Williams, now 86 but still revered in the world of speedway for his two World Speedway crowns in the 1950s, presented the winner’s trophy on Saturday night at the FIM Fogo British Speedway Grand Prix at the Millennium Stadium, just 30 miles from where the GB and Wembley Lions ace grew up in the steel town Port Talbot.
A few hundred miles north, in Scotland, his son David is Tournament Director at the Johnnie Walker Championship at Gleneagles, and after his father handed over the speedway trophy last night, he will have a similar role today when he announces the winner of this year’s tournament at the end of play today.
The Williams family is certainly one with sporting pedigree with Freddie marrying Olympic skater Pat Devries in 1952, the year she represented Great Britain in the figure skating in the Oslo Winter Olympics.
Their son, David, became a golf professional on The European Tour before taking on the role Tournament Director at the end of his playing career, while his sisters, Jayne and Sarah, have both represented GB in equestrian. And one of his daughters, Lucy, is following him into golf, winning the 2011 English Ladies Amateur Championship and now just embarking on a career on the Ladies European Tour.
Patriarch Freddie won the World Speedway title in 1950 and 1953, as well as finishing runner-up in 1952, and was the first British rider to win two world titles, a feat matched only by Peter Craven a decade later.
And another claim to fame was that Freddie was a classmate of legendary actor Richard Burton in their hometown of Port Talbot and they played together in the school rugby team.