Hancock retakes SGP lead as Ward in hot water

Kasprzak's win was one of many talking points in Latvia

Kasprzak’s win was one of many talking points in Latvia

Greg Hancock has retaken the lead in the Speedway Grand Prix World Championship after a delayed Latvian Grand Prix, however the big talking point was the disqualification of Australian Darcy Ward.

Ward failed an alcohol test on the morning of the event and was forced to watch from the sidelines. The Queenslander was expected to face the FIM Jury Sunday night (European time) to discuss the matter and any further punishment.

It was part of a dramatic weekend that saw the original venue slated to host the Grand Prix, Riga, ruled out due to bad weather. A last minute call was made to switch it to Daugvapils on Sunday afternoon, some 225km south-east.

Hancock was masterful in his approach to the Grand Prix once again. Ending the heats equal with Nicki Pedersen on 13 points, both riders made it to the Final where they faced off against Krzysztof Kasprzak and Kenneth Bjerre.

Kasprzak was able to take the victory despite a collision in the third heat with Australia’s Chris Holder from Pedersen and Hancock. The American, who came into the event behind Tai Woffinden, leaves five points in front of the British rider.

Woffinden is now 12 points ahead of Pedersen in the title race.

Troy Batchelor was the best of the Aussies with a strong eight points. He exited the meeting in the second semi-final that saw Kasprzak and Hancock qualify through. This has brought him into calculation for to directly qualify for next year’s Series, he’s now just six points away from the eighth placed ‘bump spot’.

Holder managed six points from his five rides, which places him 10th with four rounds to go. Ward has dropped to seventh in the title race.

The drama continues on August 30 in Gorzow, Poland.

 

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