Fans flocked to see King’s Lynn Stars number one Niels-Kristian Iversen at a special evening on Friday.
The Danish ace brought along a host of trophies to the Adrian Flux Arena’s Champs Bar, including one for winning this year’s British Grand Prix, for ‘A Night with Niels & Friends’.
The world number four, who signed autographs and had pictures taken with fans. was back after the recent Australian GP in Melbourne – but insisted it was not a ‘jolly’.
The determined 33-year-old said: “I was going to focus on the GP. I didn’t plan any holidays to stay in while I was there. I just wanted to go there and get on with the meeting.
“You don’t want to be last in the final as you get no points and it’s a wasted race.”
The Dane was impressed by the nature of the track in a GP season which saw many of the surfaces come for in criticism.
“The track is more clay-like. It binds together and is similar to what we get in the UK. Hopefully they will learn from this to take into future GPs and take over to the stadiums here in Europe.”
He related stories of his friend, former Lynn skipper Mads Korneliussen.
Iversen told of when the duo borrowed a sponsor’s car for a night out in Oxford– and promptly left it behind in the city!
He added: “Mads was the better drinker! I speak to him often and when I’m in Denmark we will go mountain biking or for a coffee.”
The Dane made his UK Speedway debut for Lynn with three meetings in 2001 and quipped: “I got an average of about a point! I had never really ridden outside Denmark. I was still an apprentice.
“I struggled on a grippy track. It was tough and I thought I was better than I was.
“I hardly spoke the language when I came here but you learn it quite quickly. I knew all the swear words already!”
The four-times World Cup winner commented on his second spell with the Lynn club, where he has remained since 2011: “My career kicked on when I came here. You want to get settled, but you don’t want to get too settled, if you know what I mean.
“I decided to stay as I’m still happy where I am. There’s a fine line between settling and settling too much.”
He said when growing up and beginning his career his parents didn’t even have a car for the first year and the family needed to borrow a friend’s trailer to ferry around the young Niels’s bike.
Iversen says that he speaks to fellow riders on the Grand Prix circuit but doesn’t really hang out with them.
He also opened up to host and local speedway journalist Gavin Caney about his home life and his successes in Europe.
When picking his “Dream Team” of those he has ridden with, Iversen joked: “I’m going to be number one!”. He also added of four-times world champion Hans Nielsen: “When I grew up he was my idol.”
Event organiser and the club’s commercial manager Marc Gent said: “Niels is an enigma. Since arriving at the club he has become a King’s Lynn superstar and is loved by many of our supporters.
“Tickets for this event sold within a few hours of being on sale and that is testament to how much our fans have taken to him in recent seasons.”