Danish champion Anders Thomsen insists he’s “absolutely more prepared” for the 2022 FIM Speedway Grand Prix series after admitting it was a big step up from racing in Poland’s PGE Ekstraliga and Denmark.

The Gorzow and Vojens star finished 11th in his debut season on the SpeedwayGP stage and was handed a permanent wild card for 2022 by the SGP Commission.

Having reached semi-finals in Prague, Lublin and Malilla and one final, when he finished third at the FIM SpeedwayGP of MFR – Togliatti, Thomsen showed he could mix it with speedway’s biggest stars last year.

But he admits making the transition from the world’s top leagues to the SpeedwayGP series is no easy task.

He said: “I race in the Ekstraliga and can score a lot of points and feel comfortable. But when you go into the Grand Prix, it is a big difference – people won’t know if they haven’t tried it.

“You get your backside kicked and it is really, really tough. The riders in the Grand Prix have been there for many years and they know exactly what they need – engines, tuners, bikes and they know where you need to be at what time.

“It is pretty stressful, but I have done it for one year now and I am absolutely more prepared for the season.”

Thomsen is delighted to have been given a second season by the SGP Commission as he bids to establish himself in the series.

He said: “I feel that I improved. I reached four semi-finals and one final. I made one podium too. I grew with the series and I am really thankful that they gave me one more year to show that I am worth a place in the Grand Prix. I showed I can fight with the big guys. Now I know what to do and I am really focused for this year. I really want to kick ass.”

While Thomsen heads into 2022 determined to pile up the points, he also believes he will benefit from a more relaxed approach to his preparations.

“I have stayed calmer this winter,” he said. “Before, it was really stressful. I was thinking I need to run at least 10km and do this or that.

“Of course I keep myself in shape and train a lot. But now I am trying to enjoy things more and focus on the sport and fitness. Things will come to you if you are good enough.”

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