Denmark and Poland both won their respective semi final rounds on Saturday in the FIM Team Speedway Under 21 World Championship Semi Finals to book their place in the Final with the German team securing the remaining slot with a second place in their meeting.
As anticipated, the Poles comfortably beat the Czech and Russians in Opole with the Swedish team finishing disappointingly in fourth place. The home side dropped only five points scoring 55 out of a maximum of 60 with Piotr Pawlicki unbeaten and Bartosz Zmarzlik losing only once to an opponent when Russia’s Viktor Kulakov took 6 ‘Joker’ points in Heat 9.
The Czech Republic fought hard for their 29 points but relied too heavily on Eduard Krcmar and Zdenek Holub who scored 24 of their total. Similarly there was no back up for Russian star Kulakov and the Swedish team were unable to provide a heat winner throughout the meeting.
Poland 55 (Pawlicki 15, Zmarzlik 14, Przedpelski 13, Drabik 13)
Czech Republic 29 (Krcmar 14, Holub 10, Smetana 3, Skurla 2)
Russia 24 (Kulakov 16, Logaczow 5, Fajzulin 3, Shevchenko 0)
Sweden 20 (Engman 8, Andersson 6 Wennerstam 4, Palovaara 2)
The other semi-final in Gustrow, Germany was won by the Danish team in a meeting interrupted by a floodlight failure. On a difficult track which produced a number of falls, the Danes seldom looked troubled although the winning margin was only six points at the end of racing. The home team delighted their fans with a hard fought second place and a disappointing Great Britain were relegated to third place.
Denmark were always in command but, after a hesitant start the Germans began to score points more freely and their star was undoubtedly Valentin Grobauer who was the top scorer from the meeting with 15 points from his six rides. With good support from Michael Haertel and the Riss brothers they pulled ahead of the British rivals and fully deserved their ten point margin to take the vital second place.
The British were already handicapped by the absence through injury of their potential match winner Robert Lambert but the turning point in their challenge came in Heat 12 when Kyle Howarth using the ‘Joker’ touched the tapes and was disqualified. Michael Haertel, also on a ‘Joker’, took full advantage of this by beating Jakobsen into second place and securing a valued 6 points for the home team.
Denmark 46 (Bech 13, Michelsen 13, Thomsen 11, Jakobsen 9)
Germany 40 ( Grobauer 15, Haertel 13, E.Riss 7, M.Riss 5)
Great Britain 30 (Ellis 12, Bates 8, Howart 7, Nielsen 3)
Finland 6 (Lunna 5, Niemenen 1, Lehtonen 0, Partanen 0)
Poland and Denmark now proceed to the Final in MIldura, Australia on October 31st. They will be joined by the German team who qualify as highest scoring runners up.