One Man and His Belt
When Brian Maxine clinched the British welterweight championship with an eighth round submission over Alan Sergeant on 30th September, 1969, most wrestling pundits forecast that his reign would be little more than a flash in the pan.
Legends, however, are not made of flashes in the proverbial pan, and some forty years later Wrestling Heritage readers vividly remember the antics of the long reigning British champion.
Goldbelt Maxine didn’t just hold on to the title that he won at Croydon on that historical night, but he added a second Mountevans belt, the middleweight title, less than two years later, thereby becoming the first wrestler to simultaneously hold titles in both divisions.
No one, except the man himself, forecast that almost forty years on he would remain the proud possessor of the Mountevans belt that was first fastened around his waist all those years ago.
Here is a wrestler who can boast of wrestling at the highest level in each of five decades.
No other can claim to have been part of the 1960s spirit of innovation that led to wrestling becoming Britain’s most popular indoor spectator sport and also part of the twenty-first century LDN Spirit League that ignited fans enthusiasm all over again.
These are the credentials of the man who told us to just call him Goldbelt.
Brian Maxine turned to professional wrestling, following a short lived boxing career, in the early 1960s. During those first few years when he was learning the trade there were few, if any, that saw the potential of the youngster from Ellesmere Port. There were the occasional tell-tale signs, like a KO win over World Champion Jim Lewis, and a draw with Mick McManus, but there was little that made the youngster stand out from the crowd.
All that was about to change in 1969. A failed attempt, earlier in the year, to wrest the welterweight crown from popular champion Alan Sergeant, had done nothing to alert the fans to the cataclysmic event they were about to witness. At his second attempt Maxine convincingly took the title from the Romford champion.
The day following the title change the metamorphosis began. The fairly ordinary tough-guy, Brian Maxine was transformed into Goldbelt Maxine. Toughness became ruthlessness, confidence became arrogance, and leaflets were tossed at the ringside fans proclaiming the new champion’s talents and predicting the longevity of his reign. Business cards were issued giving contact details of Goldbelt Maxine, British champion.
Not to mention the gold crown, and the regal robes. What most impressed the fans, though, was the way Maxine destroyed all challengers. No champion was more active than Goldbelt Maxine.
In June 1971 fans in Wolverhampton witnessed Maxine’s destruction of the middleweight champion, Clayton Thomson, to add another belt and more credibility to his frequent and vociferous claims that he was the greatest.
Maxine relinquished the welterweight crown but defeated all comers in the middleweight division.
We could go on, but the rest, as they say, is history. Goldbelt Maxine continued at the very top of the wrestling business throughout subsequent decades, and is now a wrestling legend.
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