The Australian Monster Energy Speedway World Cup team has blasted its way into the final in Sweden at Norfolk Arena in the UK by defeating the home side, the Czech Republic and Germany.
The Aussies will now meet Sweden, Russia and the winner of the Race-Off later this week in Saturday’s final at Mallila in Sweden. They finished the round with 45 points to the UK’s 41, Czech Republic’s 30 and the Germans lacklustre, but not unexpected haul of just 15 points.
Australian captain, Jason Crump led the way, scoring 15 points during the course of the meeting, however a stirring ride by Chris Holder up against Perth-raised Brit, Tai Woffinden was the big talking point of the event. Holder’s win in that heat meant that Crump had to finish no worse than third for Australia to qualify for the Final.
Holder walked away with 12 points at meeting’s close, whilst backbone of the Australian squad for many years, Davey Watt put in a solid performance to score 11 points.
The Aussies were dealt a blow right before the start of the meeting when Darcy Ward – still recovering from a hand injury sustained in Poland some weeks ago – was ruled out. This brought Queenslander, Troy Batchelor into the squad. As a more than capable replacement, Batchelor annexed seven points.
The Brits will have to qualify for the Final through the Race-Off at Mallila on Friday morning Australian time, where they will join the Czechs, plus the fancied Polish and Danish teams. Chris Harris led the scorers for Britain with a meeting high 17 points, meantime Ales Dryml was the best for the Czechs with 15 and Kevin Wolbert was Germany’s best with 7.
The victory for the Australian team was particularly sweet on a few levels, firstly given the late withdrawal of Ward (who had indicated earlier in the day he’d be riding), it was also the first event for veteran Mildura rider, Mark Lemon in his new role as Australian team manager.
FIM MONSTER ENERGY SWC EVENT 2 SCORES:
Australia 45: Jason Crump 15, Chris Holder 12, Davey Watt 11, Troy Batchelor 7.
Great Britain 41: Chris Harris 17, Scott Nicholls 11, Tai Woffinden 8, Danny King 5.
Czech Republic 30: Ales Dryml 15, Lukas Dryml 6, Matej Kus 6, Josef Franc 3.
Germany 15: Kevin Wolbert 7, Martin Smolinski 6, Max Dilger 1, Tobias Kroner 1.