Bike problems foil King’s Lynn Star Lambert in GP qualifier debut

Speedway World Champ qualifier at Kings Lynn
Heat 4 ANL-160805-095755009
Speedway World Champ qualifier at Kings Lynn Heat 4 ANL-160805-095755009
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Stars rider Robert Lambert fell frustratingly short of making the semi-finals in his first-ever appearance in the Grand Prix qualifiers at Lynn on Saturday.

Mechanical problems dogged the Norwich-born teenager at the FIM Speedway GP Qualifier first round at the Adrian Flux Arena, which was held in brilliant sunshine.

He finished with eight points, after leading on the final lap of Heat 12 but relegated to fourth, before losing out in a run-off with fellow Great Britain rider Craig Cook in the battle for the reserve semi spot.

The 18-year-old said of his Heat 12 woes: “Yes it was ignition problems, the same as the run off.”

The home favourite could nonetheless take plenty of encouragement from his GP qualifiers debut.

Swedish star Freddie Lindgren emerged victorious as a number of speedway’s top stars descended on Norfolk to begin their quest to reach the 2017 Grand Prix series.

Wolves ace Lindgren stormed to a sensational win, notching 13 points from his five rides to come out on top against a strong field.

And the Swedish star was delighted to move one step closer to a regular return to the World Championship stage with a classy performance.

He said: “I just focused on winning races and trying to get the points to get through.

“I felt I had some good wins early on which set me up nicely, and to go on to win the meeting was a bonus.

“I ride both Gorican and Lonigo OK, so it really doesn’t matter which semi-final I’m drawn into, I’ll go there with the same professional attitude as tonight and try to make it through.

“I like the King’s Lynn track, it’s one of my favourite tracks in England, and that’s why I wanted to come here even though it was a tough field. The track is good.”

Former World No.2 Krzysztof Kasprzak, who dropped his only points when he fell in Heat seven, defeated former Stars man Kenneth Bjerre in a run-off for second place.

They were joined in the all-important top seven by Hans Andersen, Joonas Kylmakorpi, Sam Masters and Brady Kurtz.

Bjerre said: “Nothing is easy – you have still got to do the job. I’m leading my first race and messed up so badly and two riders passed me, so if you carry on like that you can easily mess up and not qualify.

“I’m fighting all I can to get back there. I didn’t enjoy riding in England last year, and that’s why I’m not back. I felt burned out.”

Meanwhile, Stars favourite Kai Huckenbeck progressed from his qualifier in Terenzano, Italy.

He battled to nine points from five rides before defeating Jurica Pavlic in a run-off for the all-important seventh place.