FIM SPEEDWAY TOP 5 MOMENTS | GORZOW
As speedway toasts its 100th anniversary season, FIMSpeedway.com looks back at the top five moments celebrated at each of our 2023 FIM Speedway venues.
Today, we feature the iconic Edward Jancarz Stadium – stage for the FIM Speedway GP of Poland – Gorzow on June 24, as well as the FIM SGP2 of Poland – Gorzow on June 23.
1. BARTEK’S WILD NIGHT (2014)
Fairy tales don’t get much sweeter than topping the Speedway GP podium in front of your home crowd. Polish icon Bartosz Zmarzlik zoomed to a shock third place on his series debut as a wild card in the 2012 FIM Speedway GP of Poland – Gorzow.
But two years later he went all the way – sending his home fans wild as he became the youngest-ever Speedway GP winner, aged just 19 years and 140 days old.
To make matters even better for the locals, he was joined on the podium by then Stal Gorzow team mates Matej Zagar and Krzysztof Kasprzak.
It was the start of an incredible journey for the Szczecin-born racer as he qualified for Speedway GP full-time by winning the 2015 FIM GP Challenge in Rybnik. Since making his series debut, he has stormed to three SGP world titles and another Gorzow win at round three in 2020.
While the Edward Jancarz Stadium is no longer his home track, Lublin signing Zmarzlik remains a legend in Gorzow blue and yellow.
2. DOYLE’S DUEL WITH WOFFY (2016)
The Gorzow track always delivers epic action, but it was also the stage for arguably the greatest Speedway GP race of all time in 2016.
Words can’t do it justice – just watch the YouTube clip here; you will not be disappointed! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ytbNiiFn3qQ
In short, Aussie icon Jason Doyle and British racer Tai Woffinden passed and re-passed – blink and you’d miss at least two overtakes as two of the sport’s biggest names threw everything at each other for four laps.
But with one last big swing on the final turn, Doyle landed the decisive blow to claim his third win of the season, while Chris Holder quietly got the better of Zmarzlik for third as everyone was following the action at the front.
It’s a race that will live forever in YouTube folklore.
3. POLE POSITION (2011)
Before Gorzow staged its first Speedway GP round in October 2011, Edward Jancarz Stadium played host to the FIM Speedway World Cup Race Off and Final that summer.
The Poles were red-and-white-hot favourites to top the podium, but not all was well in the early stages of the Final as a power-packed Australian side took the fight to the hosts.
But cometh the hour, cometh Tomasz Gollob. The great man led from the front, hauling Poland into top gear and leading them to victory on his then PGE Ekstraliga home track.
Incredibly, it turned out to be his final FIM SWC gold medal – but it was his fifth in seven seasons from 2005 to 2011 as Mr G led his proud nation to the top of the speedway world, and inspired a generation that has continued to bring home the biggest honours ever since.
4. VACULIK’S DEBUT DELIGHT (2012)
When Polish hero Jaroslaw Hampel pulled out of the 2012 FIM Gorzow Speedway GP due to injury, series first reserve Martin Vaculik stepped up.
Those familiar with the potential he regularly displayed in the Polish leagues or his hometown Zarnovica will not have been surprised to see him get his chance at this level.
But he ended the night with his reputation enhanced dramatically as Vaculik powered to a famous win ahead of eventual world champion Holder and local hero Zmarzlik.
The victory all but earned Vaculik a permanent Speedway GP wild card for 2013, and he has eventually gone on to establish himself as a regular on the sport’s biggest stage.
Another Gorzow win followed in 2018 – also a remarkable moment in that it came just four months after Vaculik suffered what could have been a career-ending ankle injury at British track Swindon.
Victories in Prague and Torun last season show that initial Gorzow win 11 years ago was anything but an upset – it has proved a sign of things to come.
5. THOMSEN STREAKS TO VICTORY (2022)
Double Danish champion Anders Thomsen is the latest Speedway GP big gun to establish himself as a firm favourite with the Stal Gorzow fans.
And their love for him only grew last June, when he roared to victory ahead of then club team mates Vaculik and Zmarzlik in the 2022 FIM Gorzow Speedway GP.
When you’ve just raced to the biggest win of your career, there’s only one way to celebrate – well, for Thomsen at least. He peeled off his kevlars and took to the shale in his underpants for a cheeky victory lap.
While a badly broken leg ended his 2022 season two months later at the FIM GP Challenge in Glasgow, it was the moment when Thomsen underlined that he belongs at the top level.
He received a permanent wild card for the 2023 Speedway GP series and will hope that Gorzow win proves the first of many.
Find out who comes out on top at the Edward Jancarz Stadium in 2023. Tickets for the FIM Speedway GP of Poland – Gorzow on June 24 and the FIM SGP2 of Poland – Gorzow on June 23, featuring speedway’s top under-21 stars, are on sale now.
Book your tickets here: https://bilety.stalgorzow.pl/