Despite temperatures around minus seven degrees a large crowd was present in Shadrinsk on Saturday for Final 5 of the 2020 FIM Ice Speedway World Championship which produced excellent racing and some surprises.
For the first time this year defending champion Daniil Ivanov failed to qualify for the final race and saw his lead at the top of the leader board reduced to six points. Instead it was Dmitry Khomitsevich who took the top prize to renew his title chase. He dropped only one race point during the qualifying races, to Ivanov in Heat eleven, but then finished first in all his remaining races.
Khomitsevich comfortably won the first Semi Final, but Johan Weber was able to keep out local Wild Card, Konstantin Kolenkin to qualify for his second successive Final.
Ivanov was surprisingly eliminated in his Semi Final when he was only able to finish third behind Dinar Valeev and Dmitry Koltakov despite drawing the favoured inside gate at the start.
In the Final it was Khomitsevich who led throughout the race resisting the challenge of Valeev. Johann Weber made a brief challenge to Koltakov, but it was the Russian who prevailed to secure the third place on the podium. However Weber moves up to seventh in the overall classification.
Harald Simon continued his improved form to finish in eighth position, but his fellow countryman Franz Zorn was again disappointing and collected only two race points during the qualifying races. The Swedes were generally below their best although Niclas Svensson, recovered from his foot injury, was in line for a top eight place until a fall in his last race.
Leading riders after Final 5 are:
1 Daniil Ivanov (Russia) 90
2 Dmitry Khomitsevich (Russia) 84
3 Dinar Valeev (Russia) 77
4 Dmitry Koltakov (Russia) 67
5 Igor Kononov (Russia) 66
6 Harald Simon (Austria) 52
7 Johan Weber (Germany) 47
8 Martin Haarahiltunen (Sweden) 43
9 Stefan Svensson (Sweden) 35
10 Franky Zorn (Austria) 31
Racing continues in Shadrinsk on Sunday at 13.10 local time.