DUDEK: SGP STATUS NO SON GUARANTEE
Polish star Patryk Dudek admits being an FIM Speedway Grand Prix regular is no guarantee he will be picked for the Monster Energy SON.
01 / 03 / 2020, 11:29
Polish international Patryk Dudek admits being an FIM Speedway Grand Prix regular is no guarantee he will be picked for the Monster Energy FIM Speedway of Nations.
The Poles launch their Monster Energy SON campaign at Semi-Final 1 in Landshut on April 25, taking on Germany, Denmark, France, Slovenia, Czech Republic and Italy.
Just two seniors and one under-21 star can make it into team manager Marek Cieslak’s starting line-up, meaning a host of Poland’s many world-class riders won’t make the cut.
Marek will see who looks good, how fast they are and in my opinion that will be taken into account, not the fact that someone rides in the Grand Prix.
With SGP rival Maciej Janowski omitted from this season’s squad following his withdrawal from Poland’s test match with the Rest of the World last October, world champion Bartosz Zmarzlik and Dudek would seem red-hot favourites to start for their country.
The pair topped the scorechart in last year’s Final in Togliatti, only missing out on gold to Russia in the Grand Final.
But Dudek knows past performance and reputation will count for little in a country with so many strong options.
Asked by Przeglad Sportowy if he felt confident of selection, he replied: “Why should I feel certain? We have a wide squad.
“Before they announce the line-up at Speedway of Nations, there will be a few events, so Marek Cieslak will be able to select the best two.
“Marek will see who looks good, how fast they are and in my opinion that will be taken into account, not the fact that someone rides in the Grand Prix.”
Poland’s last world title came at the 2017 Monster Energy FIM Speedway World Cup Final in Leszno and they are yet to win the Monster Energy SON. While Dudek would love to take his country to their first title in the new competition, he admits it will be far from easy.
He said: “We were in the final last year and two years ago we were in the semi-final. Each time we stood on the podium.
“We know the media would like to see us only at the top, but you need to see the other side. Each of these meetings, if we repeated them, could have ended differently. This is sport. Sometimes you lose and sometimes you win.”
Poland won their 2016 SWC title at Manchester’s National Speedway Stadium, venue for this year’s final. But Dudek isn’t taking anything for granted as they bid to return this summer.
He said: “First, we must get there. We will race the Semi-Final in Landshut. Let's go through the elimination phase first, and then we'll worry about what will happen in England.”