The stakes are high in Melbourne as the race for FIM Speedway World Championship medals, qualification and wild cards reach a dramatic climax at Australian SGP in Melbourne on Saturday.
Series leader Greg Hancock heads to Etihad Stadium needing just a heat win to be guaranteed an historic fourth Speedway world title.
Injured Aussie rider Jason Doyle misses his home event after suffering season-ending lung, elbow and shoulder injuries in Torun. But with 123 points to his name, he could still land silver, with Tai Woffinden (115), Bartosz Zmarzlik (113) and Chris Holder (109) all chasing him down.
The top five are all guaranteed SGP places for 2017, with Piotr Pawlicki (91) in sixth 10 points away from securing automatic qualification and his compatriot Maciej Janowski (85) in seventh also keen to seal his spot.
Hancock doesn’t have to worry about racing for his place in the competition and he could even win the title without turning a wheel if Woffinden or Zmarzlik drop points before he takes to the track.
But having romped to a 21-point maximum to win the Australian SGP last year, Hancock won’t be backing off the gas even if speedway’s biggest prize is guaranteed.
He said: “I want to win. I’m feeling good and everything is working, so it’s just a case of carrying on what I’m doing and chasing the dream.
“Winning the title and stepping down has never been my thing. I’m not going to just let everyone else race for the rest of the points and prize money. There’s always something at stake and I’m chasing whatever is there for the taking. It’s hard to let anything go, no matter what situation I’m in.”
If Hancock seals the SGP crown, he’ll become only the sixth rider in history to win four world titles or more as he joins Danish team manager Hans Nielsen and New Zealand great Barry Briggs in the quadruple world champions’ club.
Tickets for the Australian Speedway Grand Prix can be purchased HERE
If you can’t make it to the QBE Insurance Australian SGP on Saturday, you can still catch the racing live on TV or online. Fox Sports 5 will broadcast the event live from 7:00PM or you can stream online at www.speedwaygp.com/live_stream
WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP STANDINGS:
1 Greg Hancock 134
2 Jason Doyle 123
3 Tai Woffinden 115
4 Bartosz Zmarzlik 113
5 Chris Holder 109
6 Piotr Pawlicki 91
7 Maciej Janowski 85
8 Fredrik Lindgren 82
9 Niels-Kristian Iversen 79
10 Matej Zagar 79