Speedway GP: Janowski becomes first Pole to win in Cardiff…

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British SGP podium (l-r): Championship leader Jason Doyle, meeting winner Maciej Janowski, Matej Zagar

Polish racer Maciej Janowski secured back-to-back FIM Speedway Grand Prix wins with victory in the Adrian Flux British FIM Speedway Grand Prix on Saturday.

Janowski followed up his Kjægaard Danish SGP success by storming to victory at the Principality Stadium ahead of Championship leader Jason Doyle, Matej Zagar and fellow countryman Bartosz Zmarzlik.

The win for Janowski also saw him become Poland’s first winner of the prestigious event.

Doyle, on 78 points, now has a three point lead at the top of the overall standings, while Janowski overhauled compatriot Patryk Dudek into second place by virtue of his 2016 standing, with the pair tied on 75 points apiece.

At the halfway point, the top three are setting a blistering pace, with Janowski and Dudek holding a 17-point advantage over fourth placed Fredrik Lindgren.

However, the Wrocław-born racer knows there is still much work to do, despite firing himself firmly into the title picture.

He said: ‘I think we’ll all try and win it. But we still have six rounds to finish.

‘Maybe someone else will fight for the gold in the end? All I know is I’m working hard at the moment and I’ll work even harder.

‘We’ll see what happens next. We all know how it is in speedway. We can be so confident, but I need to stay focused and keep working hard. For now everything works. I need to keep that up and work a bit harder.’

He was also delighted to become the first Pole to win in the Welsh capital. He said: ‘That is very special for me. There were a lot of Polish fans and it was crazy. They all supported me a lot and I got a lot of calls before the meeting. I will probably get a lot of messages now.

“Every win is special, so I am happy and I just want to say thank you to my team. We put in so much work and we all know how hard it is in the Grand Prix this year.’

Janowski then revealed he took a huge chance with his bike setup to ensure he got the better of fellow Pole Zmarzlik, who topped the qualifying chart on 13 points and won his semi-final, but dropped a chain when third in the all-important final.

He said: ‘For the last heat, this will be a surprise for a lot of people but we changed the setup big-time. I knew Bartek was on gate one and he would make a really good start. I knew I needed to do something. We tried and it worked, so I am happy.’

Meanwhile, Championship leader Doyle was glad of another podium finish after scoring just a point in his first ride and crashing in the next.

He said: ‘Apart from Horsens, I’ve started a couple of GPs not very well and I have really been digging deep. After the first couple of rides, I barely had any points and had to do it the hard way.

“I snuck into the semis again and fair play to Magic and Zagar. They were also good tonight. They had all the lines sorted out.

‘I’m really happy with performance. I did it for everyone watching in my box. I thought I’d be sitting out of the semis, so I’m very happy with where I ended up.’

He was also delighted to extend his lead at the top of the standings to three points, but admitted there is still a long way to go.

He said: ‘There are another six GPs. It doesn’t matter where you stand at the moment.

‘You just need to bang those points in and see where you stand at the end of the season. We’re all going to be pushing hard – it’s the GPs. It’s tough racing.’

Third-placed Matej Zagar was pleased to put his season firmly back on track with a 12-point haul that places him ninth in the standings – one point off the top eight and 10 points away from fourth.

He said: ‘It’s very tough out there and you have to get everything right to be successful. I’m in a much better position now than I was at the beginning of the season. I’m pleased with that. I would just like to say the future is bright!’

Current world champion Greg Hancock withdrew from the meeting after heat one, after initially dislocating his shoulder after falling down the stairs at home in Sweden. He was unable to continue after re-dislocating it during Friday’s practice and on the first lap of heat one.

Next up for the SGP elite is the Teng Tools Swedish SGP in Malilla on August 12.

ADRIAN FLUX BRITISH SGP: Maciej Janowski 17, Jason Doyle 13, Matej Zagar 12, Bartosz Zmarzlik 16, Emil Sayfutdinov 11, Peter Kildemand 10, Patryk Dudek 10, Chris Holder 10, Tai Woffinden 9, Niels-Kristian Iversen 7, Fredrik Lindgren 7, Antonio Lindback 7, Martin Vaculik 4, Josh Bates 2, Craig Cook 2, Piotr Pawlicki 1, Adam Ellis 0, Greg Hancock 0.

FIM SPEEDWAY WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP STANDINGS (after 6 rounds): 1 Jason Doyle 78, 2 Maciej Janowski 75, 3 Patryk Dudek 75, 4 Fredrik Lindgren 58, 5 Emil Sayfutdinov 58, 6 Tai Woffinden 57, 7 Bartosz Zmarzlik 55, 8 Martin Vaculik 49, 9 Matej Zagar 48, 10 Greg Hancock 45, 11 Chris Holder 44, 12 Piotr Pawlicki 44, 13 Niels-Kristian Iversen 38, 14 Antonio Lindback 36, 15 Peter Kildemand 22, 16 Vaclav Milik 13, 17 Nicki Pedersen 8, 18 Maksims Bogdanovs 8, 19 Kenneth Bjerre 7, 20 Przemyslaw Pawlicki 3, 21 Craig Cook 2, 22 Josh Bates 2, Nick Skorja 1.

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Speedway: Premiership ban for Holder after Lynn controversy…

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Suspended: Chris Holder

Australian speedway star Chris Holder has been handed a 28-day ban from the SGB Premiership following King’s Lynn’s controversial meeting with Poole at the Adrian Flux Arena last Thursday.

The suspension, which doesn’t include Saturday’s Adrian Flux British SGP in Cardiff or racing in Sweden or Poland, comes after the Sydney-born racer allegedly refused to take two of his rides in the Star’s 52-40 loss to the Pirates. The home side were reportedly unhappy with the track conditions for the meeting.

Holder retired from heat four before exceeding the two minute time allowance for heats seven and 13. Race 11 saw him pick up a second place when taking a tactical ride.

The meeting also saw Holder’s fellow countryman Troy Batchelor withdraw from the meeting after two rides with a wrist injury. He then guested for Swindon in place of broken foot victim Jason Doyle the following night.

British star Robert Lambert and German racer Kai Huckenbeck also failed to make the two-minute time allowance for heat nine, after which the meeting was delayed for some time while extensive track work took place.

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King’s Lynn’s Adrian Flux Arena

Issuing a statement last Friday, angry Lynn promoter Keith Chapman hit out at his riders for their reluctance to race. Fans were also left fuming over a farcical night at the Adrian Flux Arena.

Chapman said: ‘I have put my heart and soul into this club and I take things like this personally. I am as angry and frustrated as every supporter. However, I must offer our apologies because the paying public are the lifeblood of the sport. I spoke to many fans last night and apologised to them all.

‘I was extremely disappointed with the attitude of certain riders. When you looked at the Poole guys, they were out there ready to race.

‘The race times were reasonable but clearly some riders didn’t fancy it and there was no thought for the fans.

‘I agree rider safety has to be paramount, but when the Poole riders have no problem, I have to question the attitude of certain riders in my team.’