King’s Lynn rider Iversen in gr-eight GP shape

An evening with Kings Lynn Speedway rider Niels-Kristian Iversen ANL-150811-221850009
An evening with Kings Lynn Speedway rider Niels-Kristian Iversen ANL-150811-221850009

The line-up for the 2017 FIM Speedway Grand Prix series has been confirmed, including Lynn’s Niels-Kristian Iversen among the top-eight automatic qualifiers.

Double European and World Under-21 champion Emil Sayfutdinov makes his return to the FIM Speedway Grand Prix series, with ex-Lynn rider Nicki Pedersen, Matej Zagar and Maciej Janowski also awarded permanent wild cards for 2017. Sayfutdinov last appeared in the FIM Speedway World Championship in 2013, when he won three SGP rounds in Bydgoszcz, Gothenburg and Cardiff, before his season was ended by elbow and knee ligament injuries.

Slovenian star Zagar and Janowski endured the cruellest of fortunes, falling a point short of eighth-spot Iversen in this year’s automatic qualification places after the QBE Insurance Australian SGP in Melbourne last Saturday.

Two fourth-place finishes in Stockholm and Torun and an 11-point haul in Melbourne were enough to earn Zagar ninth, with the SGP Commission opting to give him a return ticket for the 2017 series.

Last year’s Polish seventh-placed star Janowski slipped out of the top eight in Melbourne after starting the night in seventh. But having won the Kjærgaard Danish SGP in Horsens on June 11, ex-Lynn rider ‘Magic’ earned a recall for next year.

Line-up (in ranking order): 1 Greg Hancock (USA), 2 Tai Woffinden (Great Britain), 3 Bartosz Zmarzlik (Poland), 4 Chris Holder (Australia), 5 Jason Doyle (Australia), 6 Piotr Pawlicki (Poland), 7 Antonio Lindback (Sweden), 8 Niels-Kristian Iversen (Denmark), 9 Matej Zagar (Slovenia), 10 Maciej Janowski (Poland), 11 Fredrik Lindgren (Sweden), 12 Nicki Pedersen (Denmark), 13 Patryk Dudek (Poland), 14 Martin Vaculik (Slovakia), 15 Emil Sayfutdinov (Russia).