BRITISH FINAL LINE-UP REVEALED AS RACE TO CARDIFF RETURNS TO MANCHESTER

The race for Cardiff is on as the line-up for the 2024 Attis Insurance Sports Division British Championship Final in Manchester on Saturday, June 8 has been confirmed.The highest-placed non-SGP rider earns the wild card spot for the FIM Speedway GP of Great Britain – Cardiff at Principality Stadium on August 17.For the first time as FIM Speedway Grand Prix riders, three-time Speedway GP world champion Tai Woffinden, former European champion Robert Lambert and reigning British champion Dan Bewley all compete in what’s set to be one of the biggest domestic meetings in the UK this year.The trio, who have all previously won the British title, will hope to use a hugely competitive meeting at Manchester’s National Speedway Stadium as the ultimate warm-up for the FIM Speedway of Nations Final there on Saturday, July 13.All three riders are being hotly tipped to fly the GB flag that night as they take on the qualifiers from the two Semi-Finals, which also take place in Manchester on Tuesday, July 9 and Wednesday, July 10, with SON2 for eight of the sport’s top under-21 nations on Friday, July 12.But a field containing six other British champions will also be out to capture the national crown, with Adam Ellis, Chris Harris, Craig Cook, Danny King, Charles Wright and Rory Schlein all in contention.GB international Tom Brennan is set to be one of the favourites on his former home track, where he helped his country to FIM SON gold alongside Lambert, Bewley and Woffinden in 2021.A stellar line-up is completed by Richard Lawson, Steve Worrall, Kyle Howarth, Lewis Kerr, Ben Barker and Connor Mountain, with Simon Lambert and Drew Kemp named as reserves.BRITISH FINAL LINE-UP (in no particular order): Robert Lambert, Tai Woffinden, Dan Bewley, Danny King, Chris Harris, Richard Lawson, Tom Brennan, Charles Wright, Steve Worrall, Craig Cook, Adam Ellis, Kyle Howarth, Lewis Kerr, Rory Schlein, Ben Barker, Connor Mountain. Reserves: Simon Lambert, Drew Kemp.

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2025 AUSTRALIAN CHAMPIONSHIP CALENDAR CONFIRMED

The 2025 Australian Championship will be contested over four rounds, starting at Adelaide track Gillman on Friday, January 3 and climaxing at the Darcy Ward-promoted North Brisbane venue on Saturday, January 11.This year’s championship was claimed by Rohan Tungate, who saw off Speedway GP first reserve Max Fricke at Gillman, with world No.4 Jack Holder beating former World Under-21 champion Jaimon Lidsey to third place in a run-off.After ending in Adelaide this year, the championship will head in the opposite direction this year, with Gillman staging the opening round on Friday, January 3.The action then moves to Victorian venue Mildura on Sunday, January 5, before heading to Albury-Wodonga’s Diamond Park Speedway on Wednesday, January 8.The final round takes place at North Brisbane’s Mick Doohan Raceway, promoted by former Speedway GP winner Ward, on Saturday, January 11.The full line-up for the Australian Championship will be confirmed later this year. 

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ELITSERIEN | ZMARZLIK HITS MAX AS LEJONEN STAY TOP IN SWEDEN

Polish icon Bartosz Zmarzlik zoomed to a 15-point maximum as Lejonen cemented their spot at the top of the Bauhaus Elitserien with a 46-43 win away to Indianerna on Tuesday.Zmarzlik captured the Speedway GP World Championship lead in Landshut last Saturday and he was in dominant form in Kumla as he prepares for his next SGP showdown in Prague on June 1.Swedish international Oliver Berntzon backed him up on nine points, with double SGP2 champion Mateusz Cierniak racing to seven paid nine.Indians were led by a 13 paid 16-point tally from Speedway GP star Szymon Wozniak, with Krzysztof Buczkowski bagging 13 paid 15 from six. Former world No.2 Patryk Dudek added 11.Elsewhere, Latvian star Andzejs Lebedevs stormed to 15 paid 16 points from six outings for Dackarna, but it was not enough to save them from a 51-38 loss away to Rospiggarna.Swedish racer Antonio Lindback led the hosts to victory on 11 paid 14, with Oskar Polis adding 10 paid 11 and Victor Palovaara tallying 10. Polish young gun Wiktor Przyjemski scored nine paid 10.Polish duo Piotr Pawlicki and Maciej Janowski piled up the points for Piraterna as they triumphed 47-43 away to Vargarna.Pawlicki picked up 15 from six races, while Janowski notched 13 paid 15. Former world No.3 Niels-Kristian Iversen was the Wolves’ top scorer on nine points.Vadim Tarasenko starred with a 15-point maximum for Smederna as they saw off Vastervik 53-37 in Eskilstuna. Double World Under-21 champion Maksym Drabik collected a 13 paid 14 for the hosts, with Michael Jepsen Jensen scoring nine.Danish rider Mads Hansen was Vastervik’s top scorer on 11 paid 12, while Speedway GP star Robert Lambert tallied 10 and double Swedish champion Jacob Thorssell added eight.For full details of the Bauhaus Elitserien results and the latest league table, CLICK HERE (page in Swedish).

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THOMSEN NAMED AMONG FIVE SPEEDWAY EUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIP WILD CARDS

Danish star Anders Thomsen has the chance to race his way back into the Speedway GP line-up after being named among the wild cards for the 2024 Speedway European Championship series.Thomsen joins Swedish international Timo Lahti, former Danish champion Rasmus Jensen, French star Dimitri Berge and German young gun Norick Blodorn in receiving a spot in the four-round series – the winner of which earns an automatic place in the 2025 Speedway GP World Championship.But they face stiff competition from last year’s top five – record three-time champion Mikkel Michelsen, two-time winner Leon Madsen, Janusz Kolodziej, Patryk Dudek and 2017 SEC champion Andzejs Lebedevs – who all qualified for the SEC series automatically.They are joined by the top five from the SEC Challenge – former world No.3 Maciej Janowski, his fellow Polish star Piotr Pawlicki, Czech charger Vaclav Milik, Polish international Kacper Woryna and Latvia’s Jevgenijs Kostigovs.Former FIM Gorzow Speedway GP winner Thomsen lost his SGP status at the end of last season, but his SEC selection offers him the chance to fight his way back on to the sport’s biggest stage.Former Finnish international Lahti, who holds a Swedish passport and has switched allegiances to the country for 2024, will be battling for his first full-time season in Speedway GP.Jensen is also chasing his first full season in Speedway GP after impressing as FIM Danish Speedway GP wild card in 2022, reaching the semi-final at Vojens in the year he was crowned Danish champion.Last Saturday’s Trans MF FIM Speedway GP of Germany – Landshut wild card Blodorn is set to emerge as Germany’s next big star on the world stage, and his SEC opportunity comes as his next big step in the sport.Berge, meanwhile, faces a race against time to be fit for the series, which gets underway at Hungarian track Debrecen on June 8 as he faces a three-month spell on the sidelines recovering from shoulder surgery.The remaining rounds take place at Polish club Grudziadz on July 20 and German venue Gustrow on August 24, with the finale at Chorzow’s iconic Stadion Slaski in Poland on September 21.If Berge is unfit to take his place, double Swedish champion Jacob Thorssell could be in line for a call-up as SEC first substitute rider. The reserves list also features Polish youngster Bartlomiej Kowalski, Great Britain star Tom Brennan, Germany’s Erik Riss and Ukrainian talent Marko Levishyn.2024 SEC LINE-UP: 155. Mikkel Michelsen (Denmark)30. Leon Madsen (Denmark)333. Janusz Kolodziej (Poland)692. Patryk Dudek (Poland)129. Andzejs Lebedevs (Latvia)71. Maciej Janowski (Poland)777. Piotr Pawlicki (Poland)225. Vaclav Milik (Czech Republic)223. Kacper Woryna (Poland)113. Jevgenijs Kostigovs (Latvia)98. Timo Lahti (Sweden)105. Anders Thomsen (Denmark)96. Dimitri Berge (France)67. Rasmus Jensen (Denmark)37. Norick Blödorn (Germany)SUBSTITUTES:24. Jacob Thorssell (Sweden)302. Bartłomiej Kowalski (Poland)27. Tom Brennan (Great Britain)47. Erik Riss (Germany)778. Marko Levishyn (Ukraine) 

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FRENCH RACER BERGE SIDELINED FOR THREE MONTHS AFTER SHOULDER SURGERY

French international Dimitri Berge looks set to miss the FIM Speedway of Nations in Manchester after confirming he faces three months on the sidelines after shoulder surgery.Berge suffered a dislocated shoulder and ligament damage after clashing with Rybnik rider Brady Kurtz, who was excluded for the incident in heat seven of Krosno’s 56-34 loss away to Rybnik on Sunday afternoon.The former FIM Long Track world champion was taken to Poznan for tests and underwent surgery.Posting on Instagram, he wrote: “Hello everyone. Recovery has started. Following yesterday's negative results which showed that the acromioclavicular bone in my left shoulder was out, I had to undergo surgery this morning because the ligaments were damaged. The operation was successful. I can now concentrate on the rehabilitation which will be long (three months). “Thank you everyone for your messages of support. Thank you to my mechanic for staying by my side and a big thank you to my club Wilki Krosno for doing their best to ensure that I am in good hands. Thanks to the surgeon Mr Lubiatowski. I will be back.”The news comes on a bittersweet day for Berge after he received a call-up for the Speedway European Championship as a wild card – a place he may not be able to take full advantage of with the opening round in Debrecen on June 8.The news also comes as a hammer-blow to France’s hopes of reaching the FIM SON Final in Manchester. The French face Poland, Sweden, Finland, Germany, Italy and Ukraine in a tough Semi-Final 1 on July 9, and Berge had a pivotal role to play in their quest to reach the Final for the first time since the 2021 title-decider in Manchester.

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