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Angel Nieto and the Spanish dictatorship!

During the award ceremony, Nieto greets Franco

In a logic that is characteristic of political power, regardless of whether the regime was dictatorial or democratic, Franco (1936-1975), the Spanish dictator, was in the habit of promoting ceremonies to reward Spaniards, musicians, sportsmen, etc., who distinguished themselves beyond borders. It was, and still is, a form of exaltation that mainly serves the propagandistic interests of those who promote it.

DERBI 50cc, 1969

Angel Nieto (1947-2017), in 1972 he had already won 5 (out of 12 +1) World Champion titles: 1969: 50cc, 1970: 50cc, 1971: 125cc and, in 1972, 2 titles: 50cc and 125cc!





Therefore, he had the necessary ingredients for Franco to decorate him!

DERBI 50cc, 1970

The story goes that, during the ceremony, while the usual boring speeches were being given, Nieto behaved like a school child, raising his arm and trying to intervene! When, after their insistence, they finally let him talk, he slyly said: "I want to quit motorcycling! They don't pay me enough to eat! I'm moving to auto, there's more money there! I already did a test and it went well!."

For the regime, this sounded like an alarm, a first-class international sportsman was at risk and, at the time, in Spain, regardless of the sport, there weren't many, much less, with the visibility of 12+1! In fact, Nieto was a good strategist in racing and in life! He never intended to race in a car, it was all a bluff! The result: Franco was startled by the prospect, and the next day Nieto received a phone call from the RFME (the Spanish federation) saying that the government had awarded him a grant on the condition that he not quit motorcycle racing! With this trick, Angel Nieto increased his income, according to some sources, for life! In addition to the smugness of the 12+1, the willingness on the part of those who exercise political power to stick to the successes of others is also proven!



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